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Easiest to hardest class

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
Easiest to hardest class

olagatonjedi's Avatar

07.25.2017 , 08:23 AM | #1
It is my hope that this discussion will remain civil, as people will give reasons for why they believe what they post. So with that said, I am looking to get a comprehensive list of what classes are easiest to play, and what classes are hardest to play. This can be from a rotational standpoint, # of skill standpoint, strategy standpoint, use of CD's standpoint, etc. Please post your list, or the class you are dead set as being hardest or easiest, and the reasons why you believe it to be so. Thanks!

RikuvonDrake's Avatar

07.25.2017 , 08:46 AM | #2
It really depends on what your strengths, as well as weaknesses as a player, are, some classes have a very static rotation which is simple to play for players who prefer having someone else think for them. However, these could be hard to play for players who easily screw up rotations when executing mechanics. Dot specs, such as Leth, Viru or Anni are fairly simple to play for such players as dots keep ticking on the target even if the players are not using their globals correctly. Then you have the whole APM and Latency discussion as well, specs such as Carnage is perfect for players who are able to press a lot of buttons quickly while still executing mechanics (although Carnage will be nerfed soonish).

However, if you disregard all these factors and just want a simple answer, I would say that AP PT or Venge Jugg is super easy with still a high reward in terms of dps output, in terms of difficulty, there really isn't a super hard spec anymore in the game. But in a raid environment, I feel that Lethality Operative might be a contender, the rotation is not difficult to execute per se, but adding in executing mechanics, using cooldowns correctly and maintaining uptime makes it a bit of a challenge.

Bloodworthy - Tomb of Freedon Nadd - The Red Eclipse - Darth Malgus

Hoppinswtor's Avatar

07.25.2017 , 08:51 AM | #3
Difficult to say because there are too many variables. Everyone's playstyle and experiences are different, but I'll share my own. If I had to rank them from easiest to hardest in terms of performing well in PvP, they'd be as follows:

#8 - Mercenary. Moderate rotation difficulty. Excellent DCDs. Low damage. Excellent survivability. Great heal spec. By far the most beginner-friendly ranged class, taking that honor from Sorc since 5.0. Merc used to require a lot of finesse....not anymore. That honor goes to Sorc now.

#7 - Operative. Easy rotations. Average DCDs. Average damage. Excellent survivability. Roll around, puts hots on, troll, win lots of regs. Only OP in terms of survivability, but still easy. Great heal spec. Not quite as beginner-friendly as jugs, but easier to survive on if you know what you're doing. Some of the best objectives players main operative.

#6 - Juggernaut. Easy rotations. High damage. Average DCDs. Average survivability. Pretty much has always been one of the easiest classes to do damage on. Does a ton of damage and stays alive long enough unless being focused in arenas. The essential beginner melee class. Capable of doing 8k dps routinely in regs.

#5 - Assassin. Moderately difficult rotations (skewed toward easy because of Hatred). Average DCDs. Moderately high damage. Mediocre survivability. Very balanced. Deception has a far higher skill cap than hatred, which is by far the easiest spec in the game. Great tank spec. Perfectly balanced class, relatively speaking.

#4 - Sniper. Moderately easy rotations. Excellent DCDs. Average damage. Excellent survivability. Tankier than most tanks. OP but not necessarily easy due to its stationary nature.

#3 - Marauder. Moderately difficult rotations. Excellent DCDs. High damage. Moderately high survivability. OP but not necessarily easy. Would be #1 if it wasn't a little OP right now. The only thing that really makes it OP besides its overtuned damage is that obfuscate utility.

The next two classes, under normal circumstances, are near the bottom of the list. However, 5.0 is...different. If you're up against a decent team, these next two classes are a bit harder to play optimally.

#2 Sorcerer. Easy rotations. Poor DCDs. Low damage. Average survivability. Underpowered with a lack of defenses. Old sorc would've been WAY lower on the list. Mediocre heal spec. A mobile glass cannon that can lose a ton of DPS if the player doesn't know how to balance survivability and damage.

#1 Powertech. Average rotation difficulty. Poor DCDs. Above average damage. Low survivability. The weakest class in PvP at the moment. Requires excellent mid-range positioning, good use of LoS and kiting, flawless use of the two hard stuns, and just overall heightened awareness due to its status as a glass cannon. Would be lower on the list under normal circumstances, but everyone is a livelord in 5.0 and PTs have been left behind. Mediocre tank spec.
Hoppin <Death Smile>
Hoppinator (Merc), Hoppin (Sorc), Hopposites (Mara), Hoptimal (Sin)
Hopalicious (Jugg), Oppinator (Operative), Hoptimize (PT)

Equeliber's Avatar

07.25.2017 , 09:10 AM | #4
What I will say mostly applies to PvE and general rotation difficulty.
I'll start with tanks, those are easy to rank.

1) Powertech - lowest amount of cooldowns, mostly passive mitigation, easiest rotation.
2) Juggernaut - like powertech with a pretty simple rotation but many DCDs that need to be used appropriately which takes some learning.
3) Assassin - hardest rotation with a lot of procs and stacks to manage and also many DCDs to activate correctly.


1) Sorcerer would be here, after nerfs it's harder to manage energy though, I guess it's mercenary being the easiest. Strongest burst heals makes it easier to control the situation, good aoe heals, kolto shell is easy to keep stacked up as it lasts for long. Energy management isn't that hard. The better heal spec for helping with DPS.
2) Sorcerer. Pretty simple heal combos, clever heal that chooses targets itself. Bubble is the easiest heal to keep up on everyone and is the most effective for healing DPS. Great utility too. Took a hit after nerf so is harder to maintain energy. Good for DPS as well.
3) Operative. Energy-wise not that hard but might get burned out quickly if you are not careful. HoTs - hardest part of the spec. Keeping them all on team members takes a lot of training, kolto waves might look easy and OP but it requires good positioning, healing when there is burst damage incoming is very hard unless co-healer helps. Doing DPS effectively is very hard as most skills are melee.
Overall, the gap between healers is pretty small. I wouldn't say they are as much different as PT tank vs Sin tank, for example.

Time for DPS, oh god.

1) Marksman sniper. Not much to say, easy rotation with not much room for creativity, simple target switching, no build-up... You just go in and do damage. Whatever happens in the fight, you can do damage. Rotation never breaks, just pick-up from the highest priority skill and continue. Good defenses, highest range, never getting in trouble.
2) Lightning sorcerer. Similar to marksman, very static and simple rotation and high mobility on top of it.
3) AP powertech. Simple and short rotation, might be harder to learn for the first time but once you get it right, it's simple. Much easier energy management than Pyrotech. Tons of burst, decent defenses.
4) Arsenal mercenary. Very little amount of abilities, pretty simple rotation, after nerf a bit harder energy management but not as hard as many others. Insane defenses, a walking bunker. Good burst, decent utility. No wonder it's the most popular DPS class in PvE and PvP.
5) Vengeance juggernaut. Very static rotation with a certain flow to it. Once you get into it, you can never make a mistake. The positioning of the chilling scream in rotation is probably the hardest part. Reflect is still a "LUL mechanics?" button in PvE. Tons of AoE damage.
6) Deception assassin. Fairly easy rotation, more of a priority list. Insanely easy target switching which only adds DPS. Good defenses. Some little management of cooldowns is required.
7) Annihilation marauder. Your classic DoT spec, has some tricks for you to learn but overall just keep the DoTs on, use Annihilate -> Profit.
8) Hatred assassin. Another DoT spec with nothing special except for just tracking the DoTs. Memorize the opener and you are good to go (it's pretty long).
9) Concealment operative. One of the hardest Burst DPS specs. Learning Tactical advantage takes time, there is a lot to learn for defenses. I would put it much higher in difficulty for a PvP-only list and lower for a PvE-only list. So on average, I put it in the middle.
10) Madness sorcerer. Like hatred, is your classic DoT spec. The energy management and limited mobility makes it harder to play.
11) Engineering sniper. Different from other DoT specs, it has a very static rotation that you can just memorize. Playing it in actual fights is what makes it hard. Plasma probe placement in PvE and managing DCDs and CC in PvP is just general description of the difficulties.
12) Lethality operative. DoT spec with a twist. Learn to maximise the Corrosive assaults and it feels easy as hell. As experience shows, most people don't know it that well. People who do, can deliver insane numbers.
13) Virulence sniper. Another special DoT spec. Rotation is quite long + you need track DoTs. I find it easy after playing it for super long but I remember how hard it was to get into.
14) Rage juggernaut. Tons of abilities (probably highest of all) in the rotation. Rotation itself is pretty static but using it
well in actual fights is a challenge.
15) Fury marauder. Same as Rage jugg except Berserk makes it much more annoying. Enrage having an actual cooldown vs stacks of Fury was always the reason why I prefer Rage over Fury.
16) Pyrotech powertech. Very hard energy management, I personally still can't do it well. You need to track DoTs as well and need to be have high awareness and positioning as the spec is the squishiest in the game.
17) Carnage marauder. Might seem very simple for a beginner but the skill cap on this spec is high as the sky. Radley Walters shows us that even if you might think you play it well, you can do better.
18) IO mercenary. DoTs, tight energy management, tons of abilities, very challenging AoE rotation - add all that together and you will understand why most people play Arsenal even if IO could potentially deliver better numbers.

That's it I think, it was quite fun writing, tried to not go into details too much to not make it super long. You get the general idea.

P.S. Some of the specs on DPS list are very close or could trade places, it's hard to rank the ones that are in the middle. Easy to say which are hardest and which are easiest. The rest are mostly the same.
Ael Veela, Sith Marauder Klorea, Sith Sorcerer Cinthie, Sith Assassin Lora Leigh, Sniper Darth Malgus

theloaddude's Avatar

07.25.2017 , 03:38 PM | #5
Ever since the balance update madness sorcs don't have any problems with energy management anymore. Even if you butcher the rotation you'll still be near full force the entire time.

MrNihulus's Avatar

09.17.2017 , 04:04 PM | #6
I do find Post-Nerf Sorc healers to be a really difficult class since it is very easy to run out of energy in heal-intensive fights. And they don't have very good burst as well.
"Savior, conqueror, hero, villain. You are all things, Revanů and yet you are nothing. In the end, you belong to neither the light nor the darkness. You will forever stand alone."

orangenee's Avatar

09.17.2017 , 04:18 PM | #7
With regards to the Carnie Mara, I am having trouble nailing down the rotation.

It's mainly a resource management issue. He was my first toon as well. Those DCDs are golden though, they're a good newb saver when you drop the ball.
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ottffsse's Avatar

09.17.2017 , 05:19 PM | #8
I mean in general the game is balanced around that it is pretty straightforward to get ok results with any class with relative minimal effort - just hit "priority" abilities off cooldown, but squeezing the most out of any class-getting that last 10%-15% will require a lot of practice and attention to detail.

That being said I think hardest are in terms of the dps specs
tier hard: io merc - energy drain and restrictive, operatives - positioning requirement and priorities can go out of whack quickly. - It is true that experienced raiders and players say that to use these specs in advanced raids and fights one must know the raid encounter by heart - one cannot "adapt" on the fly as with other specs.
tier hard-/medium+: carnage is at hard- if you are set on doing optimal dps in its ferocity window with it otherwise it would be in the "medium tier", deception sin the same for reason of paying attention to your surge charge (and they are melee so they have to chase in some situations). , medium+: fury mara, Eng sniper, Pyro

Medium/Medium- tier in the middle: Sorc specs (for different reason-apm upkeep/priorities on lightning and just overcomming low dps with careful dot placement and spread on madness), the jugg specs, Anni Mara, Medium- : ap pt, Viru sniper

easier (but not easy when it comes to maxing dps): the rest - as in Marksman, Arsenal.

Hoppinswtor's Avatar

09.18.2017 , 12:08 AM | #9
Lightning is closer to the middle of the pack, at least in terms of optimizing it in a pve environment. Your APM has to be in the upper 50s to truly optimize lightning, and you have to be pretty careful with your cooldown sequencing as well as your pre-mashing of lightning bolt; otherwise you'll cast an extra lightning bolt and mess up the entire rotation. Madness is probably easier overall. I'd swap them.

IO is actually one of the easiest specs on a dummy (easier than arsenal and even lightning); however, in an actual raid setting with target swapping, it can be a challenge to master for little gain (much like Machinist in FF14).

I will say that madness seems to have a lot of room for creativity these days....
Hoppin <Death Smile>
Hoppinator (Merc), Hoppin (Sorc), Hopposites (Mara), Hoptimal (Sin)
Hopalicious (Jugg), Oppinator (Operative), Hoptimize (PT)