Darryl was an absolutely awful addition to the Brawl Stars roster, but before I get to that, first we have to discuss some philosophy behind what goals the addition of new characters to a game should accomplish. First and foremost is that the character is unique and feels different from every other character in the game. Also extraordinarily important is how they affect the game as a whole. The last two characters, Tara and Pam, did excellent jobs performing in these areas, however, Darryl falls short.
Taking a look at Darryl’s uniqueness, he has some issues. For starters is him being the third shotgun wielding character in the game, and the second tank shotgun character after Bull. He’s also the third robot character. On the positive end of things, he wields two shotguns as opposed to one, and also has a nifty pirate hat to really differentiate himself. But don’t get the impression that he’s actually a pirate, since it isn’t mentioned anywhere, he just has the hat (to be noted, Supercell does occasionally just stick in random head adornments, like Tara’s yellow eye thingy, and the Swiss Cheese symbol El Primo has, but those characters actually have, ahem, character). Moving onto the negative side of things, Darryl has a slew of issues.
Darryl’s main struggle is in his gameplay, as he’s essentially just Bull 2.0. He has shotguns with more range and damage, but can’t pop people like Bull, and his super doesn’t break walls. That’s it, that’s all the differences between the characters. Both characters are also played pretty much the same, with flanking around behind enemy lines being their main strategy, along with hiding in bushes and using their supers to get in or escape. So, really, did we need Darryl? Did we need another tank shotgun character who plays exactly the same as the other tank shotgun character? Frankly, we didn’t.
Moving on to how the character affects the game state, Darryl fell very nicely into the group of, “tanky characters who can’t get in and are therefore bad,” category. Really, all Darryl did coming into the game was add another character who needed to be fixed alongside El Primo and Bull, and now all three are still having complaints thrown about after their buffs. The next big topic is how Darryl could’ve been a great addition to the game. When we begin looking at what content Darryl was released alongside, the first thing that comes to mind is the new, game-changing Star Powers. So Darryl, naturally, would be the perfect example of just how game-changing and important Star Powers are going to be. Just kidding; he has the least unique, and the subjectively worst, Star Power in the game. Funnily enough, both El Primo’s (damage over time to enemies hit by super (going off of his backstory) and Bull’s (the fast shooting when hurt ability) Star Powers are more unique than Darryl’s, whose ability is nothing but a shield when he’s using his super, the point in time when he’s least likely to take damage. Darryl’s chemistry with the update he was released in was laughably bad.
Darryl’s poor release and character design are surprising, considering the strength of the last few characters that have been released. First is Pam, introducing the second healer in the game after Poco, and one who is much more defense-centric than her counterpart Poco. She also has a unique backstory, being the head of her household and a skilled engineer, being able to create an incredible healing device. She introduced the new gameplay element of being able to create a temp-base with the help of her healing machine. Next is Tara, who uses mid-range playing cards to deal damage and wields a powerful Gravity Orb as her super. She also has the background of being a mystic, with a neat and standout model design. Pam fits into the cast so well she doesn’t even feel like a character added recently, rather, she feels like a character whose been around since the beginning of the game — an extremely difficult feat to achieve. Tara, meanwhile, has so many interesting traits and abilities that she defines what every new character should look like. Darryl falls flat on all of these points, and is completely overshadowed by both of these characters.
Last to cover is the big question; how could Darryl have been a better addition to Brawl Stars? For starters, he’s not the right character to be added right now. He doesn’t go well with the Star Power update, and the game hasn’t figured out how to do tank characters yet. On top of this, he doesn’t stand out at all. He should have been spiced up — had more things changed or added to his character — before he was fully released. That’s the minimum, but how could Darryl have been a truly phenomenal release? This brings us to what separates a good character from a great; how the character affects the game.
When I look at what people complain about most on the Brawl Stars Reddit (in relation to characters), I see two things: buff Mortis, and fix the tanks. Now, considering that Darryl is a big contributor to tank issues simply be existing, let’s look at Buff Mortis (If you want more info on some problems with Mortis, here: To be noted, there are two sides to this argument, with many also believing Mortis is fine where he is. Therefore, a character that was not as strong against Mortis would be extremely good in this scenario, giving Mortis more strength without directly making him stronger. Darryl, of course, absolutely destroys Mortis, and put Mortis in an even worse position. In conclusion, Darryl was an abhorrent choice of a new character, and was overall a weak and underwhelming new release.
I want to thank you all for reading, and quickly say that Brawl Stars Blog is currently working on two character designs that pertain to the issues Mortis struggled from (discussed above). Make sure to subscribe to the site if you are interested in this!
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