As for who to level, I’d suggest working on getting more 4* leveled before starting on your 5*. 4* will always have better stats than 5* until 5* hit 4T. I’d definitely make sure to get two to three 4* maxed before worrying about 5*. Also, 3* are easy and cheap to level, so to help fill out your roster, I’d suggest working on them after you’ve finished a few 4*. They’ll be nice in-between projects while you’re waiting on mats for final ascension as well.
I would also only work on one hero in each color at a time until they’re either 1. Maxed or 2. At the mat wall. It slows your progress down significantly if you throw your feeders around to too many mouths at a time. I’d suggest doing on-color feedings for the 20% exp bonus.
Another thing, I wouldn’t ascend someone unless you plan on taking them to max on that ascension next. I see a lot of heroes ascended, but not at max level on that ascension. I know it may seem trivial, but those stat increases do add up, and help make your heroes more effective on both offense, and defense. That’s why I’d always finish off your current hero to max, on whatever ascension they’re on, before starting on someone new.
I also seem some dupes. For dupes, I’d only keep a max of three, and only of the amazing heroes. You probably won’t get to leveling them for some time, but for rarer cards like 4* and 5*, it’s best to keep a few dupes just in case. Some of the less important cards aren’t as crucial to keep, but if you’re unsure about eating any dupes, I’d rather expand hero space (fairly cheap) than eat someone you may later come to regret. I’d suggest waiting on leveling any dupes until you have enough variety in your roster first. They can be projects you start on once you finish all of the important heroes in your roster.
Also, I would always keep your last copy of every 4* and 5* you come across, and keep the good 3* I list as well. Some might not seem good, but you never know if they’ll have a purpose. Always better to be safe than sorry. With needing so many heroes for war, and class quests coming up, you’ll definitely want as many unique heroes at your disposal as possible.
Now, for leveling:
Red: I would definitely max Wilbur as your first red 4*- he’s amazing for everything in-game that includes mats, and he will be one of the most important heroes in helping you get more to level your other heroes. Amazing for Titans, events, and survivability during harder seasonal event challenges. After Wilbur, I’d do Gormek to have another pulverizer leveled. He’s probably the least effective of the three, but still much better than Kelile (imo), and you will use his lowered defense special quite a bit for wars. Then, you could max Kelile to have a fast mana hitter in red (4*).
Hawkmoon, Namahage, (Azar, Rudolph and Nashgar) (3*).
Khagan isn’t too amazing, so I wouldn’t bother working on him until your other 4* and 3* are done. Even then, I’d only take him to a max of 70 and wait to see if you get lucky pulling basically any other red 5*. If not, he’s still got an awesome buff, but 4* mats are rare, so I’d make sure he fits on your team first before spending the mats to max him (5*).
Blue: Sonya is really your only good 4* blue option, so for now, I would max her. She hits fast, dispels, and is very sturdy, so she’ll be used fairly often. Agwe is pretty lackluster, but his stats will be better than your 3* once he’s at 3T, so I’d work on him next if you don’t pull any other awesome blue 4* (like Grimm, Kiril or Triton) by then, for the variety (4*).
Valen, Gato, (Ulmer & Gunnar) (3*).
Aegir is very controversial. Some say he’s amazing, and some say he’s the worst HOTM ever. Honestly, I think it’s all about perspective and learning how to use him properly. I don’t think he makes the best tank, but for where you’re at, he might do (although, Justice would probably be better). Even still, I would wait on using 4* mats on him until you’ve decided whether you like him enough to make him a staple on most of your teams. For now, I’d take him to 70 after Sonya (because Agwe sucks), and play around with him for a bit before making that decision (5*).
Green: Caedmon is an awesome hero, that hits fast and dispels (just like Sonya), and you’ll want plenty of fast hitters and dispellers for war (and it’s nice to have them in several colors as well), so I’d max him first. After, I’d do Melendor for the deep heal, dispel, and high attack stat. Little John for his high attack stat (great in a green stack). Then Kashhrek to have more healers for war, and to possibly be your war/defense tank until you’re able to take a 5* to 4T. Although, if you don’t care about defense as much, you could just take him to 60 to make use of his heal. 70 would only be if you plan to use him on defense/war defense. Skittleskull last (4*).
Mnesseus, Belith, Berden (and Brienne) (3*).
Evelyn is an amazing hero, and definitely worth the mats to take to 4T. She’s amazing in a green stack, and vs blue Titans and tanks. She’s best paired with other greens (preferrably offensive greens), so I wouldn’t work on her until you have at least Caedmon and another green maxed. Honestly though, you could probably start on her after Melendor, because she’s that good. Even if she’s only at 2/60, you could still make use out of her dispel and elemental lowered defense skill. Amazing, top tier hero (5*).
Yellow: Wu Kong is one of, if not the most important 4* in this game. He is absolutely phenomenal for Titans and events, and helps players shoot above their pay-grade in raids and challenges. Definitely one I’d max immediately. Hu Tao is your only other yellow 4*, so I spose you could do him next, but kind of like Agwe, usually they’d be dead last to level. Only reason to do it earlier is for the variety (4*).
Bane, Melia, (Gan Ju and Kailani) (3*).
Musashi is a pretty great hero. He’s got one of the highest attack stats in yellow, so he’ll be awesome to have leveled for purple Titans. He’s also a pretty great offensive hero, so one I’d definitely max when you get the chance (at least over Justice). Personally, I’d get working on him after Wu is at 70, and Justice is at 70, and take him at least to 70- possibly 80 if you can at that time. Before that though, I’d have you finish Justice off at 70 first since she’s already in 3T. Though, when it comes down to who should you max first: definitely Musashi out of the two (5*).
Purple: Since Sabina is almost to 70, I would finish her off there first. She’s nice for her high attack stat, deep heal, and dispel (plus, you always need healers for war), but she’s pretty squishy. After her, I’d get Proteus up there next. The mana block is amazing, and will help you complete everything in game, even the things you’d normally struggle with. Controlling the mana = controlling the game. Definitely an amazing hero that deserves to be maxed. After that, I’d maybe do a second Proteus before Ameonna because he’s just that good. Although, Ameonna does have her place for yellow titans; her attack stat is very nice and her survivability can be extremely helpful against higher end titans. She’s very niche, so you won’t find a ton of uses for her, but still an interesting hero nonetheless and worth leveling at least to 60 (4*).
Balthazar, Chochin, Gill-Ra (and Tyrum) (3*).
Domitia is nice because she dispels buffs. She’s actually the only TC 5* to have that skill, so that can be crucial. She’s not as shiny as the HOTM, but still has her place. Definitely someone I’d work on after your first (and possibly second) Proteus, but worth taking to 70 and seeing if she fits. She’d be a decent hero to take to 80. There are some that are better, but still one I’m sure you wouldn’t regret taking there (depending on how many pulls you make, and TC’s you run) (5*).
Defense team (with the heroes you have leveled):
After you get some more leveled:
Hope this helps. If you have anymore questions, always feel free to ask. Good luck on your leveling