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Showing content with the highest reputation on 10/01/20 in all areas

  1. 7 points
    I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking the massive dirt cloud kicked up using Sprint is an eyesore so I'm hoping it is within the realm of possibility for there to be a Minimal FX option that can added to get rid of it for those that aren't fans.
  2. 5 points
    I think that's the key part. Making the game more difficult as a whole should be an optional decision, not one forced onto the playerbase in some ham-fisted way. My two cents: if content is going to be made more difficult it should be optional and should come with increased rewards for the increased difficulty. As long as those rewards are meaningful it might convince more players to give it a shot.
  3. 5 points
    Ways to address balancing TW: Playability 📈 OP'ness 📉 Thank you for coming to my TED Talk.
  4. 4 points
    Afraid of a little bit of dust? Sorry, maybe this game is a bit too hardcore for you, might I suggest something a bit more casual like Fortnite?
  5. 4 points
    There's a pretty wide gap even between an "okay" IO build and a really well-tuned high end one, I'd say... That would have to be taken into account as well.
  6. 4 points
    My question stands, whether you're talking 50+ or sub-50 content. The problem is once you begin to balance content around IOs the IO system is no longer optional for participation in that content and you're locking out players who would otherwise be interested in participating. At least with incarnate-based content you can grind that out and simply playing the game will eventually get you the resources you need to participate, but the same can't really be said for IOs. Besides, if you're making new content more difficult without increasing the rewards to compensate you're already ensuring that content won't be significantly utilized. Players will continue to gravitate toward the content that maximizes rewards for the time/effort which will continue to be existing content.
  7. 4 points
    How do you take the IO system into account without making the game incredibly difficult for characters who aren't IOd? Even at that point, what do you balance against?
  8. 4 points
    You've inspired me. But instead of glowing energy for a head medieval guy... I went with a space ghost. Meet the Cosmic Spirit: Psychic Blast / Atomic Manipulation Blaster
  9. 3 points
    I am sure I'm not the only one who likes to add captions/speech/stuff to pics, so here is a place to share. Hope these provide a few chuckles!
  10. 3 points
    Hello fellow heroes! So I've been working pretty hard on a near-total Inspiration icon replacement and I think I'm ready to share what I've come up with. First off, I really wanted to try and convey Inspiration tiers via something other than larger graphics. That's what the small diamonds are in the picture below: Other than that, I've pretty much replaced everything except for Gift Inspirations, Hami/Eden Inspirations, and some teleport ones. There's 77 icons! Here's what they look like in-game (I'm a newbie with no fancy dual/team insps): Download: Levs_Inspiration_Pack_1.0.rar Update: Now available on CoH Modder as "Levs Inspiration Icons 1.0" To Install: Unzip the data folder into your CoH install directory. You want the folders to look like this: ...\City of Heroes\data\texture_library\GUI\Icons\inspirations\[the .texture files] To Remove: Just delete the files. Nice and easy. I hope you guys enjoy 'em!
  11. 3 points
    I don't find that more palatable but less, because it removes what little player agency exists in the content. Whether it's soul cookies, mind control, or holding a loved one in the boot of a car, it might work as a motivator when you're writing a novel or a movie, but it does not work long-term for anything even remotely collaborative like a (MMO)RPG where you have a player who has a right and a duty to make decisions for their character. I would certainly not play 50 levels of being so completely under someone's thumb; I might make it 5 levels, and then I'm changing the channel. That being said, your simple classic approach already appears in some form in CoH content; e.g., parts of Dr. Graves' arc and the Spring Fling arc.
  12. 3 points
    The fact that they have controls and multiple attacks sub-20 makes them significantly harder than the standard Blue side mobs. Or even Redside. Standard hellion minion has one revolver attack and one other melee attack. An axe or sledge or something. If they're in melee range they will just wait for the melee attack to recharge. This means you have a couple of seconds between attacks. Their LTs are even worse, they only have a Shotgun or Submachine gun attack. No melee at all. This is all almost identical for all the other low level groups blueside. Redside gets a bit tougher, your average Wolf Spider minion has 2-3 attacks and doesn't have to waste time pulling a different weapon out. That raises their DPS just by virtue of them having less downtime between attacks. In addition a group like Arachnos has a ton of enemy types that all have weird quirks to them even at level 1. Smoke grenades, psi attacks, electrical attacks, end drain, sleeps, toxic damage. They're much more dangerous then the 1-20 blueside groups. Longbow is fairly similar in that respect, though with fewer tricks. GOLDSIDE though. The Clockwork, the PPD, the Resistance. They all have multiple attacks they can cycle and they rarely need to exchange weapons. They're almost always attacking and it's almost always mixed with some exoitc damage like Energy or Fire which at level one many people are going to have no protection against. You get up to even just level 10 guys and you're looking at hard controls and status resistance too. It's one thing if you're running a melee class with defenses of some kind. But squishes get chewed up.
  13. 3 points
    I literally just killed all groups except this one and got no ambush, so your theory seems to check out!
  14. 3 points
    You're right. It won't be a magic solution. But we can't compare the ambush (30 or so bosses) with a normal cyst pack (10 or so bosses). The ambush is a huge thing that surpasses 99.99% of common content (where else do we get 30 actual bosses thrown at us in a single wave?). It's superb bragging material. But in the end it's a MotITF, not a master-of-running-in-and-killing-every-enemy-ITF. We already do these attempts either not fighting all the enemies and just running from oracle to oracle, or leaving every cyst with a sliver of HP and then destroy them all at the same time. Skipping the ambush is, IMO, just fine. Perhaps just mentioning whether or not it was done. As for how not trigger it it is not something I do since loads XP, but when unfortunately roped into surprise-it-is-a-speed-run! the way done is the moment we finish rescuing the oracles and leave the cave we immediately fly up. I believe the trigger lays in the group just before of the pack with the minotaur that is actually guarding the NPC so coming from behind avoids it. And I mean, heck, once you try it and if you manage to get past the cysts and the double AVs and the auto hit fluffies, nothing stops you from coming back and studying the ambush and how to beat it just for completion sakes. I know I barely managed it on my Fire Armor on regular +4x8 even with Barrier and it was only with the invulnerable Banished Pantheon pet sharing agro that I got it. But this was before I upgraded the build with the procs to up the killing speed.
  15. 3 points
    The kheldian ambush is too much of a hurdle and tbh it should be considered optional for such a challenge since we can complete the ITF without triggering it in the first place.
  16. 3 points
    Banging my head against +4/x8 buffed MoITF on several scrappers has given me some serious appreciation for the survivability by Tanker builds on display here. After ~10 attempts on various characters, I haven't even made it out of Mission 1. My last try was on a TW/rad/soul, built with Defensive Sweep enhanced for defense and Shadow Meld, rocking ~80-100% melee defense and Ageless debuff side. Plus the knockdown goodness and damage you'd expect from TW. Regular Cimerorans can still be a threat with 2 or 3 bosses at once. The Dwarf/Nova ambush absolutely destroyed me both times I got there. I am not using Amplifiers yet. In my foolishness, I thought the above build would be enough. Perhaps I should settle for being Heavyweight over Super Heavyweight... not that I'm even sure amplifiers would be enough. I had an earlier attempt with my claws/bio/soul stalker. It's a funky build without Assassin's Strike, fighting purely at range. Flying with jetpack, the mitigation is surprisingly good against Cimerorans, at range stalker mitigation can more than keep up. Especially when Shockwave keeps them bouncing up and down. But it is a pain to navigate in the caves, and again I got destroyed by the first Dwarf/Nova ambush. Buffed enemies truly stress 75% res hardcap characters with medium HP. On the inv/db tanker, it only felt like I had to keep my eyes open, like a "regular" hard challenge thing. On scrappers/stalkers, I'm finding even all my usual shenanigans of kiting aggressively (read: run away, a lot) can't keep pace with incoming damage. Werner's proposed DM/inv build is likely the answer. I'm going through my current stable of characters to see what gives, but I might just bite the bullet and reroll. Especially as it would finally give me an excuse to play Dark Melee again (it's been a long time). And, for that matter, scrapper Invulnerability (it's hard to say no to /bio).
  17. 3 points
    Keep in mind, this is when pricing for IOs was absurdly high and out of reach for most players on the AH. The situation is much, much different here.
  18. 3 points
    I have not played goldside at all but based on what I've read both here and on the forums back on live it seems goldside content is significantly harder and there's a good deal of complaining about it. I think DA is a different thing altogether as incarnate level shifts apply there and once you've got all 3 level shifts pretty much all content there is trivial. Like... yeah, you can make content that's more difficult for IO'd characters versus baseline content, but then that same content is that much more difficult for characters that aren't using IOs. Whether that's seen as a problem is a different story, however.
  19. 3 points
  20. 3 points
    While there have been several suggestions about upping the difficulty (such as running with buffed enemies) and using the other choices to make it harder (only AT powers, etc), the truth is that none of these add to the rewards. It is harder content for the sake of harder content. People do not progress from +0 through all the gamut until +4 for the sake of difficulty. They do it to increase their rewards. If +4 brought no benefits then the game would be played at +0 to finish faster in order to do more. This is a super common theme in Guild Wars 2 where despite the game being incredibly simple and easy the population is elitist to an incredible extreme fostering a very toxic subset of it. They want their dungeon/fractal runs done in exactly 2 minutes. If they take someone who does not know the strategy or does not use one of the community approved builds then they are ruthlessly kicked out or the team disbands if the run takes 3 minutes since every two runs they could have done one extra. We have completely skipped that (thank $deity). This is in part because of the AE. Now those who want to grind for hours can do so solo and not form groups who HAVE to run their Freak missions in exactly 3 minutes. But offering solutions for the heck of it does not work. How often is the extra difficulty used for regular play? At most I activate the 'must be done in X time' just to keep track of things and not for the extra challenge. Using the 'all enemies are buffed' would make an ITF take an extra half hour to finish and we end with the same merits and same inf. This is why the extra difficulty is never used. Now say each adds 10 merits, and the buffs all enemies turns into, dunno, 20 merits? They might not even be efficient but it would be something. My own suggestion of 'all enemies are now bosses' ramps up the difficulty by a fair bit (things do not die in a single AoE volley, they retaliate, when they hit back they hit a lot harder and since there is not just one but a dozen it can easily kill even softcapped squishies) but the rewards are substantial as well since a minion gives something like 8k influence and a boss 51k. The reward makes the extra danger and slowness appealing.
  21. 3 points
    Indeed. This is exactly why I don't think it should be up to the player to manage thier way around fundamental balance problems in the system. Casual teaming is the foundation of this game and should be supported above all else (imo). Unfortunately different people have very different ideas of what 'turning people off' looks like. For me it is an MMO that can't support the teaming dynamic into the high levels, where support AT's feel they aren't contributing and where all AT's start to homogenize in the endgame because they are all built for damage and defence and use the same handful of incarnate powers. For others it is the prospect of any kind of balance pass that might affect them in any way. But as noted above, this discussion isn't going anywhere. I'm reasonably confident the devs recognise the problems but whether they can come up with workable solutions or not is another thing entirely.
  22. 3 points
    A handful of my current favourites. Jin Wu: Ninja/Storm MM - Hoard: my dapper mummy - Sinistar: a tiny sentient star stuck in some armour - Shotaro: I like Super Sentai, ok? - Royal Guard: I'm also a big fan of epaulettes.
  23. 3 points
    So our current winners are @Healixat "older than @Jacktar" which under the Milton Berle rules of "only pull out enough to win" will count as 72 unless otherwise stated and @Zeraphiaat barely 20. If you two could PM me your global here on the HC forums, I will disperse your hard-earned inf for having existed for an arbitrarily long or short period of time.
  24. 3 points
    Here's another way of looking at things. The team doesn't need a tank. (all archer team, all spider team, etc.) The team doesn't need dps. (tanker tuesdays, thursdays, whateverdays) The team doesn't NEED anything, but is happy to have you whatever AT or role you play. the team is greater than the sum of its parts.
  25. 2 points
    A harmless suggestion but I'd take it a step further and cannibalize Ninja Run and Beast Run (and all the Prestige Sprints) into one highly customizable Sprint. Dust cloud optional. Pretty silly that a suggestion like this would get crapped on.
  26. 2 points
  27. 2 points
    DDR makes it easier, but I did it with a Dark/MA Tanker using Storm Kick and Barrier as my “DDR”.
  28. 2 points
    I found the +negnrg resistance from barrier FAR more useful than the heal and +regen from rebirth. Just 2 more shillings for the mix.
  29. 2 points
    And this right here is the whole damn problem. Let's see those 100% clear all times!!!
  30. 2 points
    That is the "unsolvable" problem when it comes to any idea of harder content. IOs basically double the power level of your character (or more). So it'd be impossible to balance content for IO characters without screwing over non-IO characters just like SO balanced content is a complete joke for IO characters.
  31. 2 points
    Unfortunately they cannot be separated. Even if someone wants to run harder content that doesn't mean they want to nerf their own returns by seeking more challenge. Harder content will take longer to run by it's very nature, so having the same rewards is a bad idea. That doesn't mean harder content needs to be the most lucrative content, clear speeds matter too. If you do a hard TF and get 50 merits, the easy TF gives you 30 merits, but you can run 2 easy TFs in the same time you can run a hard TF this starts being closer to what is desirable. The Hard mission doesn't have to be hands down better, but it does need a boost in rewards to prevent it from being ridiculously worse. And ideally the hard TF would reward very slightly more for the same amount of time. Not enough to matter or force the issue, but enough to just play the psychology of the gamer brain into being "this was worth it". Because if the challenge is more fun for someone but the reward is far less you end up with a state of cognitive dissonance. Like it or not most people in this game are significantly influenced by reward level because of how the progression is designed.
  32. 2 points
    I reread all of the AMAs a few months ago. One of the things brought up is that the increased difficulty gold side was a mistake. They were dealing with new systems and new power sets that they didn’t fully comprehend, and did not realize how much more difficult it would be compared to even red side. Paragon Studios planned to eventually nerf gold side NPCs, especially The Awakened.
  33. 2 points
    Introduction Psi/Dark is a thematic pairing which I have enjoyed playing in other ATs and I have recently leveled a Sentinel to 50, currently exploring the incarnate world. Both sets are quite attractive visually – I personally like the look of Dark Armor, in particular when Cloak of Darkness is run in Minimal FX mode so that the character costume is still visible, and the shield effects are quite complementary with Psi Blast primary, I think; Murky Cloud with its sparkle aura and in particular Obsidian Shield with its head-aura pulse. Furthermore, Dark Armor is one of the best sets for resisting psionic damage which to me at least feels ‘right’ for a pairing with Psi Blast, although you could also make a ‘my greatest strength is also my greatest weakness’ thematic pairing with something like Invulnerability which could also be fun. The primary set also turns out to be quite attractive visually, with plenty of options for customizing the blast animations, and a gently satisfying set of sounds so everyone can always know when you are around without becoming too annoying… I’ve played a lot of Dark Armor on melee ATs and I have always both enjoyed it and felt something of an attraction as it has, at times, been something of an outsider compared to the really popular defensive sets. I don’t think that is really the case anymore, as inventions origin sets make it easy to deal with the notorious endurance consumption and to potentially add a lot of defense and/or resistance to its base numbers, but it is still for many something of an awkward set of tools to try to make use of, and I was curious to see how the Sentinel implementation would compare. Overall I’m really positive about it, the only negative for me being that Cloak of Fear seems to be quite difficult to make work for a Sentinel due to the extreme lack of other fear-causing powers to pair it with. I’m pretty sure that no blast power causes fear, and therefore we are left looking at either taking a minimum or two powers from the Presence pool, maybe three if we want to use Invoke Panic, or being a Vigilante aligned character and making use of the Fear Incarnate Alignment Power. It’s a shame that the options here are so limited unless one wants to just run with the ‘minions only’ out-of-the box performance as I do feel that Cloak of Fear should be one of the defining powers of Dark Armor for thematic purposes if nothing else, and terrorizing your enemies is just cool AND a very effective form of protection with the reduced attack rate and –to-hit effect. Nonetheless, when thinking about how I wanted to realize my character I decided that the fear-based route seems difficult on a Sentinel, and instead planned to take the stun aura, Oppressive Gloom. When paired with Psychic Blast this seemed a much more promising direction of travel; Psy Blast has two stun generating powers at tier 8 and tier 9 in Scramble Thoughts and Psychic Wail. They come late, but ‘Gloom comes later so that is no issue, and they are both great powers which we will want to take anyway. Furthermore, the Psychic Mastery epic pool which I also want to take for thematic purposes also contains a nice stun power in Psychic Shockwave, and it is PBAoE so naturally pairs very well with the nuke. Things are starting to take shape with the character, then. I have the aim to build around stacking stun effects and those stuns are primarily going to be generated at close range, so I will need to be able to survive extended periods in melee range. Existing Resources Having established some goals for my character I headed over here to the Sentinel forum to look for advice, in particular to get some insight into those two powers in Dark Armor which are unique to Sentinels – Tenebrous Regeneration and Obscure Sustenance. Dark Armor with regen? Weird! But I guess that is the point about Dark Armor – it’s meant to be weird… Psi/Dark has been fairly commonly discussed on the Sentinel boards, and I don’t want to repeat all of that in this post so I will link here the main topics which I found useful when thinking about my character and my approach to leveling. My hope is that it will be useful to have all of this information collected together for easy accessibility and thanks to the linked topic contributors who helped me to get a good grip on the utility of Psychic Blast and the unfamiliar features of Sentinel Dark Armor. First of all there is the amazing ‘Collaborative Project’ guide which is stickied in this forum. I think this is my favorite topic on the whole forum. Here we find two guides to Psychic Blast by oldskool and drbuzzard as well as oldskool's guide to Dark Armor, all of which were very valuable Furthermore, I made use of the following topics for better understanding some of the details. Thrillmill actually started a topic around the same set of power sets and epic pool even if you have to ignore the recommendation to go Fortunata instead of Sentinel! Psi/? Build Help! has some fairly detailed responses looking at the primary set, while serxiom's topic covers Psychic Blast but I found it mostly interesting for the discussion around Dark Armor. There are other topics which also cover one or other of the Sentinel sets so I do encourage you to look further afield and make use of the search because you never know which one might contain the nugget of gold which you seek, but the ones I have linked here were quite sufficient to get me up and running, literally running around Paragon City in fact! Discussion and leveling experience Returning to the topic of how I thought about the character I was struck by just how good the Psychic Mastery epic pool is on Sentinels! That really is a good set of tools and I did consider talking everything in there, although my current build skipped Mass Hypnosis as I felt it didn’t really fit well with my aim of spending a lot of time inside the mobs and making heavy use of AoE and stun attacks. Apart from that, however, pretty much everything fits the concept perfectly. Shockwave has already been mentioned and synergises very nicely with Oppressive Gloom and Psychic Wail. Mind Probe has a very short range – it is listed as melee range – but that is perfect when that’s where I anyway want to operate most of the time. Dominate is well known for its Proc potential but it is anyway a high-utility power which with set bonuses can be made cheap and fast-recharging making it easy to fit into a late-build smooth attack chain, and Link Minds has great team benefit and contributes to the layered mitigation that I’m looking to build up – the to-hit buff is gravy. Now if Psychic Mastery had an AoE immobilize in place of its sleep then I would have found that irresistible, considering its synergy with stun effects to bring brutal lockdown to the party. But, really, that would be just too good. I could have found the group immobilize in quite a few of the other pools but only at the cost of less thematic compatibility so the choice was made. There are potentially drawbacks to this approach, however, as a lot of powers come late in the leveling process, and I therefore planned to use a respec around level 44 to switch out some powers from the primary set and replace them with the attacks from the epic pool. This also allowed me to plan to select the Fighting pool late in the build which gave me a lot of power choices while leveling to sample everything from the primary set. According to the linked topics above there are some fairly agreed upon winners and losers in the Psychic Blast set but if I believed everything I read on the Internet I’d never have played Dark Armor for a start, so using a respec was a convenient way to try out all of the primary powers so that I could decide which ones to keep once the epic pool came on-line. I never had a planned build for the character, rather I had a plan for how I was going to try as many powers as possible, knowing that I could make the final decisions based on experience rather than just ‘the numbers’. Protector of Innocents – Guardian – Keeper of the Peace: Hero levels 1-24 Before heading out in Paragon City proper I paid a visit to Atlas Park Pay2Win and picked up the Prestige Enhancements, travel powers and a Blackwand. I also selected the Double XP Boost as usual but I like to complement it with a macro to suspend XP gain. This allows me to have very fine control over how fast I am progressing, useful for maintaining access to story arc contacts and also so that I can spend enough time gaining experience with the various powers as I need, then jump ahead at quick pace if I want to do that. /macro_image “DayJob_XPBoost” “XP” “option_toggle noxp” I also have some influence stashed in email and I spent 34,000 of it to immediately purchase 8 hours of each of the Amplifiers and the Reveal power. This is a very small amount of investment for a lot of early game utility. In particular the Defense Amplifier means that I can run without any defensive toggles until approximately level 20 or so, which greatly helps with endurance use while waiting for slotting IOs/SOs and to have sufficient enhancement slots to invest in endurance reduction. It also gave the flexibility in the leveling process to concentrate on evaluating the blast set and the unfamiliar powers in the secondary. This approach worked out really well, I must say, and by level 22 I had been able to take everything from the primary and secondary sets. The Reveal power is not important to the build of course, but it does make the likes of purple caves and council maps MUCH easier to navigate. A complete bargain for 10k. Sentinel Psychic Blast in the early game I found that all of the blasts from Mental Blast (1) to Psionic Tornado (7) were able to contribute something, even the much maligned Mental Blast, although it was clear from early on that this was never going to be ‘a keeper’. Its animation is too slow, its punch is too weak and its proc-potential is poor as it only takes ranged sets and recharges too quickly to reliably leverage them. It does bring –Recharge at a respectable 30% but we can access that effect elsewhere in the set, although the debuff did seem occasionally useful when fighting low level EBs such as Atta. The Sentinel inherent doesn’t feel strong enough to justify keeping it for the long haul although if the damage boost was a little higher (for example, some future tweaking of the mechanic) it could become worth to consider. TK Blast is a superior level one pick, its hits hard enough and animates fast, even if its 6 second recharge means that Psychic Blast does struggle to put together a smooth attack chain early on if Mental Blast is overlooked. Its knockback component I find to be useful, although it is not 100% reliable and you need to be aware of which enemies have resistance to it. Nevertheless there are many occasions where I find it useful to temporarily get rid of enemies who are getting overfriendly so I was not tempted to slot a KB-KD enhancement here; I prefer its default behavior. Psychic Scream is the first AoE attack in the set and it is a cone so you will sometimes need to adjust positioning before triggering it. Cones are also a somewhat awkward fit with melee combat but my character was not fighting like that much at these levels, preferring to stay back and blast most of the time, so lining up the come was generally straightforward. I found this power to be pretty underwhelming; damage is nothing to get excited about and sometimes TK Blast would have knocked enemies out of the cone’s range, but the main issue is it just takes too damn long to animate and too long to recharge. Despite all this, I leaned on this power fairly heavily as part of my attack cycling as a filler attack until quite late in the leveling process. Will Domination is the first what I would call defining power in Psychic Blast. It recycles pretty quickly, animates fast and hits hard. The secondary effect – a Mag 3 sleep – is genuinely useful if you are not just mashing buttons and use it to disable a lieutenant-class for later attention. When you come back to them they already have one third to one half of their health removed and go down quickly. I leaned on this attack hard while leveling and still do. Psionic Strike has something of a bad reputation but I found it to be extremely useful well into my 40s and was genuinely concerned about leaving it out although I eventually did move on from it. The main reason it is not a popular choice is the long animation time as there can be no argument about the damage it inflicts from good range. What makes it better-than-expected is that the damage is front-loaded in the animation so it hits hard quickly, but delays the next attack while the animation completes – an animation I quite like, by-the-by. But that does make it situationally very useful, for example, finishing off a large chunk of damage on the last enemy in a spawn, or for quickly getting to grips with a hard target. It has a very high inherent accuracy and therefore doesn’t often miss which also softens the impact of that long rooted time. I recommend to try it and to make heavy use of it while your build matures. Like I say, I didn’t feel that comfortable about respecing out of it, although I would say that the reason I haven’t missed it later is that Psychic Wail is a more-than-adequate replacement, despite being a completely different kind of power ‘on paper’. Finally the early-ish game also gives access to Psionic Tornado in the late teens. This is a second AoE, this time a targeted AoE, which means it can also be used easily in melee range, and that is just as well as the 40-foot range constantly catches me out when blasting from distance – I find it’s not quite long enough for range blasting, although with Cloak of Darkness in the secondary it is nearly always possible to get close enough to use it to start a combat, the usual drones/snipers caveat aside. Having said that, there are nearly always better options for starting a fight, and Tornado seems to me to be another one of those Psychic Blast powers where the animation is just a touch too long and the damage is just a shade too low to be really impressive. The knock-up is genuinely useful both solo and on teams, and it can occasionally fill in the attack rotation, and so overall its utility and ease of use at close range make this attack a decent enough fit for my character concept and it has remained in my build while never seeing heavy use. Comments on early game Dark Armor As mentioned, in early game play I basically replaced Dark Armor’s toggles by using the Defense Amplifier from P2W which is crazy cheap if you buy it at level 1. I don’t really think that anyone running Dark Armor is going to ignore Dark Embrace, Murky Cloud or Obsidian Shield for any reason other than concept, so I won’t comment on those although I did anyway take them for later use. Instead I will take a look at the two Sentinel-only powers and the Cloak of Darkness. Tenebrous Regeneration is an auto +Regen power which in isolation is hard to judge how it contributes to survivability, especially as part of a defensive set which doesn’t usually include regen as part of its layered protection. What it does offer is much more passive regeneration than Health, so it seems to me that on a Dark Armor Sentinel you should probably never need to slot health. Instead you should slot Tenebrous and decide whether to follow a proc-based approach or enhance its natural regen – or both. In the end I settled on a little bit of both, although in the early game I pretty much just left its default slot empty. Where the benefits of Tenebrous Regeneration do get interesting, however, are in combination with Obscure Sustenance. Now, coming from other versions of Dark Armor this is where I had the most doubts about the Sentinel version. On casual inspection this power seems to be a replacement for Dark Regeneration and ‘on-paper’ it seems to be a lot worse. Dark Regeneration is like the magic get-out-of-jail card for melee set Dark Armor users, a one click potentially big hit to your endurance bar but a truly monstrous heal that can easily take you from the verge of faceplant to a completely replenished green bar. Obscure Sustenance is a far more subtle, less gaudy power than that, but over time I came to realize that it really is the key to how Dark Armor Sentinels can just keep going and going and going. There is plenty written elsewhere (see linked threads) about how this power works mechanically, and it gets better as you level and assign slots to it, especially recharge and in my opinion it works better to enhance its regen than the recovery aspect, but I do think it is worth to experiment with that and find out what you prefer. But once you get into the habit of using it proactively and often it is undeniable that Obscure Sustenance really keeps Dark Armor Sentinels in the game for a long time! A couple of lessons I had to learn along the way: firstly, you don’t need to slot accuracy here or pop Psychic Focus just before using it. In fact, that is a complete waste as this one is only going to miss on a 1-in-20. Secondly, it is a PBAoE around its TARGET, not you. That means you have to be kinda close to the target to get the benefit which can be a little bit counter intuitive for a ranged attack which can hit from further away than you get the benefit, so you will need to get into the habit of running or hopping into medium range before hitting it. This also has the benefit of putting you definitely in range for Psychic Scream and Psionic Tornado so that works out quite conveniently, and for my target concept of a primarily melee-ranged fighter it works out perfectly of course. I usually look for the immediate heal green number over my character if I’m in doubt about the range – if I see it I know I triggered it successfully. For experienced Dark Armor players from other ATs this power is by far the biggest change from what you are used to and you really do need to unlearn that stuff to get the benefits of Obscure. I pretty much always take Cloak of Darkness as I think the benefits it brings are just too good to overlook, even for a dedicated tank where stealth can appear to be an odd fit (it really isn’t). Pretty much the only reason I can see to skip it are for characters who really don’t want to include any level of defense in their build and are extremely power squeezed, in which case you will want to take Combat Jumping to you get some immobilization resistance. Champion – Defender of Truth – Vindicator: Hero levels 25-39 During the mid-game levels my Defense Amplifiers expired and I had to start running Dark Armor’s toggle defences with a notable impact on endurance consumption. This was the point where I started to realize what a difference-maker Obscure Sustenance can be once it has 3 or 4 enhancement slots allocated to it and some recharge and heal standard IOs. I don’t think you would ever want to slot this power for damage, but that little bit it does can occasionally have niche uses, in particular I like to use it to finish off high level Rikti drones with a sliver of health left simply because of its insane accuracy. But this power is all about keeping you blasting longer by more rapidly filling up the blue bar and by patching any damage that isn’t soaked when taking the alpha. The mid-game also brings some good blasts into play. Scramble Thoughts is the start of our journey towards becoming a stun machine, but unlike the other ATs’ version of this the Sentinel version carries a very significant damage potential as well making it a great opening shot. I invested 6 slots into this one pretty much as soon as I could to leverage that damage potential, using a set of Opportunity Strike ATOs. This provides great accuracy and damage while helping out a lot with the 20 second base recharge and 18.5 endurance cost which are both pretty heavy. The proc won’t fire that often – around 20% of the time with the basic version. The animation time for this power is once again its main drawback, clocking in at three seconds, although I do like the ‘crusher’ alternate animation. Solo you can work around that pretty easily, but on a team you will need to select your targets carefully otherwise you will find yourself rooted in place and the target down before you actually hit them as the damage is back-loaded in the animation. Nevertheless, you can chain this to be followed by Psionic Strike for a mighty one-two punch which takes 6 seconds to animate but actually delivers its damage over around one second which can quickly put down a hard target. Psychic Wail is a PBAoE nuke which on Sentinels generally does less damage but recharges faster and costs less endurance than Blaster nukes. As usual we get some secondary effects which here are a hefty –Recharge debuff and a mag-3 stun effect, same as Scramble but affecting multiple targets. These two powers in combination allow us to stack 6-mag of stun on a boss, significantly increasing survivability. Psychic Wail really starts to open up a Sentinel’s potential to be an AoE attacker once you can get that recharge down to around 40-45 seconds. You probably will need Hasten to achieve that which I didn’t have at this point, consequently the mid-game experience for me was one where I became able to spike damage and some mez at the beginning of combats but I still had a slightly inconsistent attack chain for the follow-up blasts. Taking Hasten earlier would help with this and the reason I didn’t do that was simply because I wanted to play with all the powers before deciding what the later build should keep and what to respec out of. During this phase I also opened up the Psionic Mastery epic pool and took Mind Probe as I wanted to sample it and spend some more time in melee range for using Wail and Sustenance. With some slots I found it very well suited to my purposes and began to see a future without Psionic Strike. I ended up going for 6 Touch of Death IOs here for the melee defense bonus and the negative damage proc. I could imagine builds with a different focus perhaps using Kinetic Combat, Makos or Hecatomb instead. There are quite a few options for procs if diversifying damage type is a priority but I generally find that it hits fairly hard even on resistant foes. I have definitely used it to beat Malta Hercules Titans. As discussed back at the start of this long post, this range of the game sees the rounding out of Dark Armor, but aside from Oppressive Gloom giving me the third component in my stun arsenal there is not a lot of offer here. Sentinels’ difficulty leveraging the utility of Fear effects plus the very situational usefulness of Soul Transfer make these hard picks to justify in what I was finding to be quite a power-pick tight build. I did consider trying to fit in Soul Transfer for thematic purposes, and mechanically it is an interesting power with a truly massive and wide ranging stun effect, but the fact of the matter is that you just won’t be dying that often on a Psi/Dark unless deliberately pursuing over-leveled challenges. Justice Incarnate – Hero of the City: Hero levels 40+ Heading into the late and end-game my character was able to really come together, achieving very high levels of protection and survivability, a melee-oriented playstyle and the long dreamt-of smooth and consistent attack chain. Psychic Shockwave is a fast animating attack with superb synergy with Psychic Wail, being a PBAoE mag-2 stun and decent damage. I used a full set of Obliteration IOs here, again chasing a large melee defense buff, but different play styles could leverage quite a few different options here, including some decent enough proc options as the power also takes stun sets. Dominate is extensively covered here on the Sentinel boards and indeed in many sections of the forums so no additional comment is really warranted here except, yes, I followed a proc-based route with the hold seen just as a bonus. At level 45 I finally reached the right moment for the much anticipated respec. Having leveled the character fully through regular gameplay I felt that I knew most of the powers pretty well and felt comfortable moving on from a few of the primary set blasts. Level 45 also meant that I could immediately bring in three attacks from Psionic Mastery and have enough slots to make use of them from the get-go (remember, when respeccing the game doesn’t care when you picked the power, just whether or not you have enough slots). My main aims when setting out had been to build a melee oriented fighter with the capability to bring a lot of stuns quickly to the fight – typically in the range of mag-8 to mag-10 on selected targets. In order to survive at close range my concept was to work towards a high but not necessarily soft-capped melee positional defence, backed up by a range of middling resistances which Dark Armor can provide without too many compromises. I also wanted to have access to Rune of Protection as an ‘emergency’ resistance booster and for rescue from very heavy mez environments such as when fighting Malta for example, so that drove my choice of travel power also. Three powers from Sorcery pool, three from Fighting and Four from Psionic Mastery meant that my build was rather power-pick squeezed, therefore I decided NOT to pick anything from Leadership or Leaping Pools despite their potential for increasing defenses and as LotG mules. I expect some people would consider this ‘suboptimal’ and you definitely could go in that direction, but as ever I value theme and concept just as much as optimisation, preferring to follow the layered defenses and heavy-stun approach which a Psi/Dark Sentinel can realize better than pretty much any other AT outside of perhaps a Dark/Earth tank. To make room for the pool powers I decided to lose three of the primary blasts. Mental Blast was always going to be superfluous and was an easy drop, while I finally decided to also remove Psychic Scream and Psionic Strike. I think you could definitely argue between keeping one of Scream and Tornado, neither of which are particularly impressive from a damage-dealing perspective. I kept Tornado simply because of its knockup utility and ease of use when fighting at melee range. Psionic Strike eventually became replaced by Mind Probe and Psychic Wail as reliable heavy hitters. If its arcanatime was reduced I would seriously consider finding room for it again, maybe even replacing Tornado and just taking more single-target damage over AoE, but I doubt that is going to happen and truth-be-told I don’t really miss it. The build was completed with Hasten, which I probably should have tried to work in much earlier to give a bit more capability to exemplar, especially considering that the 5 cornerstone attacks come in the second half of the build. For now I run with late Hasten, however, as I want to experiment with early access to Rune when running exemplared content. Wrap-up Well that pretty much concludes my thoughts on in-game play with a Psi-Dark Sentinel to-date. In a moment I will provide a build link, but I do want to stress that this is not meant to be ‘the’ optimal build for a Psi-Dark. It is a good and very survivable build for certain, but it is very much meant to explore the potential for a ‘Stunning’ Sentinel. Of course, my character is also ‘Stunning’ but you get my point. You could definitely hunt for more recharge, or go for typed defense, and this combination could also be played as a ranged blaster. Having said that, I do think that if you are going to play Dark Armor you need to be getting right into the heart of the action and leveraging the interesting tools the set provides, rather than just taking the shields and hiding out at the back. I will continue to experiment while gaining incarnate levels; I’m already trying out whether the immobilize proc in Spectral Interface can have any kind of synergy by reducing ‘stun-wander’, and once I have enough influence for a second build I am seriously considering going a very different route and seeing what I can do with a fear-based build, going deep into Presence pool. I do welcome comments and feedback on this post and will be happy to update or clarify based on any responses. I hope some of you have found this review interesting and maybe one or two might be tempted to explore the different types of character that Psychic Blast and Dark Armor can provide. Finally then, here is my current – NOT optimized!! – level 50 build
  34. 2 points
    A lot of times, I blow through the levels 40-50 doing various things like task forces, radios, etc - with the intention of coming back at level 50 to do the PI arcs. Tina is the one contact (there might be others) which you can out-level though. I realize you can Oro the arc, but it would be nice if the level range for the arc could be extended to 50.
  35. 2 points
    I actually think this is a better topic for General Discussion. There are many different ways of approaching 'problematic' missions, and I don't see any specific actionable changes that would be worth dev time. It's not as if any devs frequently chime in on threads in the suggestion forums (and when that happens, it is frequently to offer 'calm down' reminders). A thread for venting seems perfectly appropriate. I particularly don't like this aspect of 'rescue'/'kidnap' missions: It's trivial for player characters to have improved movement speed (ehem, inherent Swift) such that the player completely outpaces the civilian. We can talk about the thematic approach & roleplay implications, but such discussions won't change my mind that this side effect of the game's design is essentially griefing players. If player could single-handedly delay another player's progress in PvE mission completion, I don't think that would be long tolerated.
  36. 2 points
    I think the issue is that the subset of gamers who actually want challenge just for the sake of challenge is really quite small. Having done stuff like solo LRSF, I'm all for more challenge without the reward sometimes, but I honestly don't think CoH is a game that can support this kind of playstyle for long because so many other games do it so much better. So, in my opinion extra rewards for extra difficulty are necessary, but the implementation has to be smart and probably requires data collection from actual gameplay. Personally, I'd like to avoid a situation where some optional difficulty settings become mandatory for reward efficiency while potentially shutting out less optimized characters and teams. As a rule of thumb, I guess it would be fair if a difficulty setting that increases average completion time by X%, the rewards increase by half that, e.g. buffed enemies on average extends a TF by 20% so now the participants are entitled to 10% extra XP/inf and merits. On average, reward efficiency decreases so there's no point in forcing these modifiers for a random team, but a highly optimized team could maybe achieve a similar reward/time ratio with or without the modifiers, but they'd get to play more challenging content should they want to do so. Something like this could work for close-knit power gamer groups without disturbing the core of CoX experience: casual teaming.
  37. 2 points
    To be honest, I think all the survival IOs are worth slotting. Steadfast Protection (cheap) and Gladiator's Armour (expensive) Damage Resistance Slot +3% defence - 3% is excellent value for a single slot. Unbreakable Guard Damage Resistance Slot +7.5% hit points Reactive Defences Defence Slot +3-13% scaling damage resistance this gets higher as you lose hit points and synergises with widows' abilities well Shield Wall Defence Slot 5% damage resistance very good value for a single slot Preventative Medicine Healing Slot Chance for Absorb shield the chance increases as you lose hit points - again, has good synergy for widows' scaling resists and I basically use it as a warning system to when I start having to pay attention to my health Panacea Healing Slot Chance for small (5%?) heal this also does the same for endurance and is worth taking for that reason alone The psi-specific ones have much less value to widows who tend to have a lot of psi resistance. How high are your positional defences? I only really think 30% is necessary for most gameplay unless you're specifically trying to solo +4x8 content all the time. Remember that teammates will often top you up and when you hit the incarnate levels you'll get about +50% from teammates half the time.
  38. 2 points
    One thing? Asides from Energy Melee damage for tanks being so mediocre? I'd overhaul AE. I'd extend SG bases and have the option to walk out or tp into your own zone. Where you can place the contacts for your own scripted/created missions. eg. You could have Kings Row as the 'private' map for your SG base. And like the SG base. You could invite people to play you on your 'private' map. You become the 'GM' of your own adventure in CoH this way. That way you could customise your own levelling experience in CoH. Azrael.
  39. 2 points
    Survey done. hope it helps your cause. On the point above, I have a slightly different take on it. While my wife has her wedding dress waiting to become an heirloom (a day that hopefully takes longer than I anticipate), I have some quasi-heirlooms that I have "bestowed" upon my daughters. While others may simply view them as hand-me-downs, these are pieces of clothing that have special meaning to me and have luckily withstood the ravages of time (i.e. rock shirts, shirts with cool print/messages, my high school sweatshirt, etc.). They're not worth much in monetary value, but do carry a lot of memories and I'm proud to see my daughters wear them.
  40. 2 points
    I'll never forget years ago, back on live, a group of us were invited on a base tour. You could immediately sort the base builders from the casual tourists because while they were all oohing and aahing over the Fusion Generator (which, to be fair, took PVP rep to earn so most folks hadn't seen one) we builders were all fawning over the room's doors.
  41. 2 points
    I took a slightly deeper look at a few of the early choices, I didn't see a Gladiator's Armor +3% Def or an Unbreakable Guard +Max HP in the build, so I'm looking for a couple of slots for those. Level 4: Tactical Training: Maneuvers (A) Luck of the Gambler - Defense/Increased Global Recharge Speed (5) Red Fortune - Defense/Endurance (5) Red Fortune - Endurance (7) Shield Wall - Defense/Endurance (7) Shield Wall - +Res (Teleportation), +5% Res (All) I think TT:Maneuvers could be slotted slightly more efficiently. I personally don't think the tiny set bonus from 2x Red Fortune is worth chasing here. I don't take fighting pool on my widows, so I consider Tough to be overkill, YMMV. Keep in mind that you can boost (50+5) the PVP pieces. I think having a Shield Wall Defense and Defense/End boosted to 50+5, along with the Global +Resistance is providing more benefit (+2.25% Health) than the Red Fortune 2-piece resistances. Plus they exemplar down to level 7! This would get you one extra slot to play with. Level 10: Indomitable Will (A) Titanium Coating - Resistance/Endurance (43) Aegis - Resistance/Endurance Here is where I usually 2-slot the 2 Resistance pieces I mentioned. Another place you can pick up a slot IMO is Level 44: Assault (A) Endurance Reduction IO (45) Endurance Reduction IO You may not notice much difference running with a single 50+5 Endurance Reduction. You may want to consider moving one of those slots into Ball Lightning to get the +Max Endurance bonus from Annihilation. In the long run, having a larger Max End will be more beneficial than the little extra endurance discount on a level 44 toggle power.
  42. 2 points
    I think the game has evolved from the standard MMORPG (tank/dps/healer) to something better. While each AT can trace its roots from the so-called trinity, each of them can be built according to how you want to play. The epic and patron pools allow for that, as well as certain IO sets. Now that doesn't mean you should turn your Blaster into a full on healer... well, you can, but you won't be as effective at it... but you can. whatever floats your goat. Hence a specific AT is not needed since the lines that separate the ATs have been blurred. "Does not need a specific AT" is NOT about the need for a specific AT. It's exactly that. The team doesn't need [insert specific AT here]. Don't tell me you've never run a TF/SF or mission with just Blasters, Dominators, and MMs. Was there a tank? no. Did someone else take the place of a tank? could be, but also doesn't matter. Or what about a Scrapper+Brute+Tank team? No heals but your own, no holds, debuff, nor immobilise but your own. or none at all. And yet it still works. Say you joined a TF with either a complete set of the notable ATs or a rag-tag band of whatevers, and you go AFK for 5 mins. Then when you come back you find that they completed the mission without your help. It does not equate to your character not making a difference. While it's true that you will be missed as greatly as the void left by your hand when you pull it out of the water, your presence there made a difference. Just because the team didn't crumble when you died (or went afk) does not belittle your worth or your utility. Rather it illustrates what great teammates you had/have. I reiterate that the team is greater than the sum of its parts. Should one part fail momentarily, the rest adjust until he/she recuperates. Should one part be missing, the team compensates one way or another. If you want your character to matter, then play as a team not as a specific AT or role. Your type of powers are inconsequential; what is important is that you have enough confidence in yourself, your toon, your play style to know that you do matter. If you are sincerely pulling your weight during a run, then you are making a difference and you are important to the team effort. So for every successful team mission you've accomplished, you can chalk it up as making a difference. _____ I posted this last night... and I just had another thought when I woke up this morning: Go run an TF (I suggest the Terra Volta respec trial) solo at +4x8. count how many times you die, how long it took you to finish if you finish at all, how many insps you popped, temp powers you carried, etc. Now go run a team with a nice mix of ATs (doesn't really matter what). compare how many times you died, how long it took, etc. Now forget your toon for a second and focus on the members of your team. THAT is your contribution when YOU team. I hope this helps people realise their worth.
  43. 2 points
    you're playing with some absolute garbage blasters if that's the case
  44. 2 points
    @Healix . . . . . . why you do this? Why? Whyyyyy . . . !
  45. 2 points
    Shards should just be removed from the game in general.
  46. 2 points
    Get rid of the XP penalty from Confusion. It's so dated. You can add other weaker penalties, like no xp unless you (or a group member) at least tag the enemy. But I don't see why a Mind Controller is entitled to any less xp than a Mastermind. That's the best buff to Mass Confusion, for me at least.
  47. 2 points
    I'd suggest picking up a copy of Who Fears the Devil if you can find one that doesn't cost an arm and a leg. Aside from just being good fun to read, Wellman's Silver John stories really do convey pretty well what I feel like the City version of Appalachia is like. (He never actually sets a date for any of his stories. The supposition is that they're mostly set in the 1950's, but there's a timelessness about them that jives with that "not as developed/modernized as the region is in our world" feeling I have of the place.) Cabins in the woods and isolated towns with little general stores aren't out of place.... Witch's Gap, the place Shonokin is from, is like that.
  48. 2 points
    I don't want to put words in Lumi's mouth, but I read it as "Escort missions are badly designed", rather than "The concept of saving citizens is a bad one". It more calls into question the mechanical AI pathing issues that CoH is famous for. It's easy to imagine a better execution of those sorts of missions. Edit: The one that really grinds me is from that same Johnny Sonata arc, where you need to kidnap Akarist from the Shadow Shard. He struggles to path over the terrain, and then when you lose him he'll say "And here I am left to my own devices. There are few things as depressing as an incompetant kidnapping." Mate, I'm not the one who's confused by a slight incline!
  49. 2 points
    Heartbeat pulse from the Beast aura... chest only along with illuminated shoulder rings and gloves.
  50. 2 points
    One small feature from WoW that I miss in CoH is the ability to hang little moons and stars over mobs. Would come in handy if you were running, say, a Synapse and had found the three mobs guarding the warehouse worker. As soon as the tank shows up all sorts of needless mobs will get trained in and it would be nice to flag the real targets.
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