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  1. Fifty levels and 14 veteran levels later, I finally came up with a backstory for my main, Flaminatrix, a fire/fire/flame mastery blaster. It probably could use some expanding, but for now I'm keeping what fits in the bio window. "My name is Taryn McKinley. I had a pretty normal childhood, except for my overachiever, taskmaster mother always on me about how if I keep doing this thing, or keep not doing this other thing, I'm never going to accomplish anything. And then I had the misfortune of hitting puberty. I discovered I was a mutant when my powers suddenly manifested and I set the house on fire. God, she's never let me forget that! "You can't even gain superpowers right!" she screeched. "Well, now I'm a Big Damn Hero. Incarnate, even. I've saved the world several times over. Are you happy now, Mom?!"
  2. Here's the initial costume for my villain, Jouleiana, an Energy Blast/Energy Manipulation blaster! Juliana Omlin was an engineer on a Crey Industries project, researching ways to use fiber optics to transmit energies more powerful than mere light and data. When a hero came rampaging through her workplace, a piece of exploding equipment left Juliana blind, and the released energy permanently altered her skin, leaving her bright pink. Once recovered from her other injuries, her mind was still as brilliant as ever, but now she held a deep hatred for so-called "heroes". She accepted an offer from Crey to have her right eye replaced with an experimental optical implant that interfaced with her undamaged optic nerves and restored her sight, along with providing other benefits. She returned to work, but her anger toward heroes only grew deeper. One day she stole materials from work and built herself a suit. The outer mesh of the suit is a dense fiber optic network that works as a transformer of sorts, amplifying the energies produced by the generator on her back. The network feeds the energy into her custom gauntlets. Her gauntlets release this energy in destructive streams and bursts, as well as giving her physical attacks considerably more power. The gauntlets also interface with her cybernetic eye to provide precision targeting.
  3. My years of playing WoW led to me feeling the same way about what I call "mechanics for the sake of mechanics". Stuff that is put in there just for the sake of putting it in there, regardless of whether or not it makes any actual sense. Like one raid boss whose laboratory had an exploding floor. Why would that even exist? "Yes, I choose to do my work in a room that has been constructed in such a way that hellfire randomly explodes from the floor." And then the accepted strategy for dealing with this mechanic (as well as many other mechanics with different encounters) was to "stack". "Stacking" meant to literally stack everybody on the same physical spot, that one spot where they'll be safe from the damage or other negative effect. A true metagame strategy that relies on the fact that there is no character collision detection in that game and multiple characters can simultaneously occupy the same physical space. It completely destroys any sense of verisimilitude. Goldside is also unfriendly to serious altoholics. Back on live, I got one alt all the way through Praetoria to level 20, and in hindsight I think I only managed it because it was still very early in my "career" (I only discovered the game a year before sunset), so I had few alts at that point and it was easy to devote the necessary time to that one character. When I came back for HC, I had 30+ alts almost right out of the gate, due to resurrecting/rerolling a bunch of my old characters. And so right away, my attention was divided between a lot of different characters. So when I rolled a new character goldside, I'd play him for a couple levels, and then play with a number of my other alts, and it might be two weeks before I got back to the goldside alt again. By that time, I'd lost track of where he currently stood in relation to all the double-double-agent stuff going on, and the ensuing confusion made it very difficult to just log him and pick up where I left off. I ended up deleting him and just rerolling him blueside. It was after that that I resurrected my original Praetorian character from live, and just rolled her straight to blueside and wrote a bio about how she can't remember how she got her powers, but she has a vague impression of having once existed in a different world but can't recall anything specific about it. In any case, my only combat-related "difficulty" issues in the current game are more limited to low-level mission content, rather than level cap stuff, and also happen need nerfing rather than buffing: The overwhelming prevalence of enemies with abilities that low-level characters lack the tools to counter. Examples: Vahzilok toxic damage, CoT ghosts stacking -ToHit. The CoT thing seemed exacerbated during the first few months of HC, as the CoT maps were overpopulated with those ghosts - at least it's what I was seeing. I certainly understand RNG, but a months-long streak of maps populated almost entirely with ghosts and just a scattered few of the human CoT mobs seems like an oddly specific, overly-long streak of bad RNG luck for one player across multiple alts. The standard advice of "eat a yellow" becomes less than useful when you end up needing to eat them so often that you're out before you're halfway through the mission. In any case, that particular "streak" of ghost-overpopulation ended rather abruptly and the map populations became more balanced after one of the patches, which does make it seem that something was actually "off". There is also the way maps seem to spawn at +1 to whatever my actual notoriety setting says, but doing so with no discernible pattern. I'll run one character through an arc, and every mission spawns +1. Then I'll run the same arc on a different character, at the same level as the previous character, and everything spawns matching my notoriety setting. The only thing that seems to consistently respect my notoriety setting is the named "boss" at the end of the mission. If I'm set to the default +0, the end "boss" is always a yellow-conning lieutenant with white-conning lieutenants, but on some alts everything on the map before him was yellow minions and orange lieutenants. On too many low-level alts, I have to drop to -1 just to get maps to spawn even-level (and then I get a white-conning lieutenant "boss" at the end). It's just weird when the end "boss" is the easiest kill on the map.
  4. Nah, I mentioned stalker because I had recently done the Faultline arc on a stalker (and good lord, being a stalker is almost useless on the Captain Castillo mission where Doc Delilah tags along, given that she wants to run in and aggro the entire room). I mentioned Dark Melee because I had spent the day playing my DM scrapper, and had noticed her lack of a buildup. I was mainly bringing up this "issue" because I'm not entirely sure it's intentional. It started happening after one of the recent patches, at least this particular example of it. I currently have 84 alts and have probably run at least 40 of them through Faultline (I'd need to count Ouro portals to get a more exact number), and for most of them I saw a pretty fair map randomization on that mission and never encountered this "three Engineers within 15 feet of each other", or even this particular map. And then the last five or six alts who had done this mission before my post have gotten this same map with these same three Engineers in the same place. I understand that this is well within the realm of RNG, but it's still kind of odd that, across so many alts, to never see this configuration once, and then suddenly see it 5-6 times in a row. I've seen other odd changes to missions following patches. After the most recent patch, the second Jim Temblor mission started being strange. Going back to my time on live, that mission, regardless of which map spawned, always proceeded in the same order: Arbiter Sands up front, Fusionette in the middle, and Kurse at the end. After the last patch, those three NPCs have spawned in a different order in each of the three times I've run the mission. In one instance, Kurse spawned in the middle and I found Fusionette in the room after Kurse.
  5. I have no idea if this kind of thing is even possible, but ... Would it be at all doable to tweak the code such that specific mob types can't spawn multiples within a certain proximity? Or, at the very least, stop specific mobs occurring more than once within a particular spawn group? I'm talking about Sky Raider Engineers. The ones that fire up forcefields. On the Faultline mission, "Recover Akashi Knight's Body" (from Doc Delilah), one of the possible maps includes a T-intersection, and at the intersection there are two spawn groups of Sky Raiders, one to the left and one to the right. Due to their positioning, there is no way to attack one group without also aggroing the other group (even with a Stalker, though at least a Stalker can just slip past them all). On top of this - and here is the biggest issue - one of these groups consistently spawns with two Engineers, and the other group contains one Engineer. At least at the level where this mission becomes available, it is quite impossible to interrupt more than one of these Engineers, so you're likely to end up with two of them activating their forcefields, and in the unfortunate event that your attack misses the one you wanted to interrupt, you'll get all three forcefields going. And when that happens, you're suddenly surrounded by six enemies that you can't land a single attack on due to the stacking nature of the forcefields. It's quite possible to arrive at level 20 without having your Buildup power yet (and Dark Melee doesn't have one at all). I know the standard strategy for this kind of situation is to pop a yellow, but at level 20 you only have 10 insp slots, and this kind of situation may occur multiple times in a mission and you still need other kinds of insps as well.
  6. As I discovered when I tried to get rid of the Heightened Speed buff from Secondary Mutation. The character already had a major movement speed buff from a regular power, and the added speed from Secondary Mutation made navigating caves completely unmanageable.
  7. That's what I was looking for! Thanks! I know, right? 84 alts and counting...
  8. As we all know, 1023 characters is often just not enough for a good bio, and I have run up against that limit hard with the latest bio I'm writing. I have heard of people providing a link in the bio that people can go to in order to read a character's extended backstory. Alas, I no longer maintain my own website. Is there a site out there that provides this service? Or how do most people do it?
  9. Alas, I was unfamiliar with the term 😞 Though once I selected the new name, it occurred to me that perhaps her real name is Nika. "I was a nice girl once, until I ended up in those Crey experiments. They turned me purple. Sure, the new mental powers are nice, but THEY TURNED ME PURPLE!" It all went downhill from there.
  10. Psychonika, my Psychic Blast/Regen sentinel villain (originally named Psychosa on live, where she was a blaster, but I only got around to resurrecting her a couple weeks ago and by that time somebody else had taken the name). Not a particularly spectacular costume, but I discovered I could get some pretty cool shots in the character creator by clicking a power in the power customization screen and then clicking the Save button. Her other costumes are better, but I haven't grabbed screenshots of those yet.
  11. I combined the Spectrum pieces, Bio Plasma aura Body+Eyes, and Fire Shield pretty effectively, I think, to make my fire/fire blaster main, Flaminatrix, look like she's actually made of fire. Though I'll admit the effect isn't quite as good in a still image.
  12. Steel Canyon detectives will introduce you to Montague Castanella after completing a safeguard, if you haven't already met him.
  13. "You shouldn't hang me on a hook, Creyzee Ex. My mother hung me on a hook once. ONCE!"
  14. Hmm, the guy I'm fighting in the screenshot is on the roof of the Zig (I was there for the exploration badge), but the other two this guy encountered were "underground" way over at the eastern edge of the zone (where there's another badge).. All, though, were outside of the area where the event is active (I'm defining the area as where the event progress window pops up) and when I did pass through that area the window didn't indicate any progress - it was sitting at 0/20.
  15. This isn't game-breaking by any means, but I have noticed several times, recently, that "Prisoner" mobs in open-world Brickstown are conning a level lower than they should. For example, as shown in the screenshot below, my level 35 hero is fighting a level 35 Prisoner minion, and the minion is conning blue instead of white. Similarly, I'm also encountering same-level Prisoner lieutenants that con white instead of yellow. The odd thing is that this isn't every Prisoner mob, just the occasional mob now and then. I haven't noticed this happening with any mobs in Brickstown other than Prisoners, and I haven't seen it happen in any other zone.
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