Putting some not-ready-for-primetime drafts here for now.
--- Begin Apathanos draft ---
What Type of Gladiator are You?
There are three "ideals" you can strive for in the arena, and there are very good reasons to pursue any of them. Unfortunately, it is not possible to achieve all three simultaneously. There's a certain give-and-take between them, and each player has to choose how to strike the balance. The three ideals are frugality, ferocity, and frequency.
You want to participate in the arena, but you don't want to spend a lot of money on charges (or maybe none at all). You want to get a lot of wins/bricks from the arena, but saving your hard-earned money/charges is more important to you. In fact, you may even try to gain charges from arena rather than spending them.
You want to win. You want to have a good record so you can get the various arena achievements and so you can reach high ranks on the arena pantheons. And of course, with every win comes a brick.
You want to get into the arena as often as you possibly can. There are very good reasons to do this. For one thing, you often get a brick just for entering. And obviously, the more often you enter arena, the more opportunities you have to win in the arena. For fast temple building, frequency is even more important than ferocity.
Hopefully it isn't too hard to see why it isn't possible to do all three simultaneously. Winning in arena costs charges, so if you're fighting frequently and ferociously, soon you will run out. Then you have a choice - buying charges (giving up on frugality), taking a break from arena (giving up on frequency), or accepting some losses (giving up on ferocity).
Obviously there is some middle ground, but most people will choose to sacrifice one of these ideals for the sake of the others. This results in three basic "types" of gladiators:
Tacticians (Frugality/Ferocity): For tacticians, win record is more important than a fast temple. They are patient and (compared to other gladiators) don't go to the arena very often. They bide their time, waiting to get 3 (or likely even more) charges by accumulating, from gaining levels, from killing Holiday monsters, and from activateable artifacts. They tend to have a very high win ratio, but the total number of wins will be much lower than Brawlers (and even Opportunists) of a similar age. Tacticians are probably the rarest type of gladiator, but they are a force to be reckoned with.
Opportunists (Frugality/Frequency): Opportunists are not particularly concerned about their win records, and for them the arena is really just a means to an end. They go to arena mainly for bricks, charges, or for the trip to Godville (getting to Godville is especially valuable after temple). They try to avoid long expensive arena fights... to be continued
Stuff that I wrote before moving a different direction with the structure of the document, but still might be useful to fit in somewhere later:
You will get a brick on entry somewhere around 40-45% of the time. Even if you send to the arena and lose every time, that means on average you're buying 0.4 bricks for the cost of 50 GP, your gold, and a couple minutes of your time. That on its own is a pretty good rate for collecting bricks. But sometimes you'll also get 3 bricks for losing, and nobody can lose all their matches, even if they try. So a very conservative estimate is that you get half a brick each time you enter arena regardless of what happens in the fight.
--- End Apathanos draft ---