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Hard TFs, and +4s, and newer players. Oh crap


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On 5/9/2021 at 8:12 AM, Crysis said:

I carry max qty Envenomed Daggers as my PUG rescue pill.  Usually a Signature Summons or two as well.  Works almost every time, especially if someone else has the Daggers.

Yep.  Every single one of my characters gets a Shivan Shard and Vanguard HVAS as soon as possible.

 

 

On 5/9/2021 at 8:55 AM, Ukase said:

And, if you take my comment in context, it's a way to cut down on odds of a bad experience. Undoubtedly, this policy would "weed out" better than average players from time to time. Maybe great players. I'm willing to take that risk. 

That would weed out most of my characters.  😛

 

 

On 5/9/2021 at 9:59 AM, fitzsimmons said:

I was teamed with a dark/dark defender the other day who was vet level 152 who was only using Howling Twilight for rezzing.  I suggested that it can be used offensively.  He didn’t take kindly to that suggestion.

It can be, but I don't use it that way either, generally.  You never know (especially with PUGs) when someone will faceplant and lead to other deaths and then you really need Howling Twilight to be available.

 

 

3 hours ago, ZemX said:

But I'm a filthy casual.

Filthy casuals everywhere!  Go purple your warshade.

 

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I used to hail from Infinity.  Mainly on Everlasting, now.

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3 hours ago, Coyotedancer said:

  

And what I'm trying to show you here is that, while it's fine to *have* standards, as criteria go the one you've chosen isn't great. It may not be a reasonable indication of what you're looking for. It may just be badge-hound bias.

 

If you'd used badging as your standard back-in-the-day, you'd never have run with Nemissary or Sola. ('Pretty sure Task Force Commander was the only accolade Nem had at the time, and that was just by virtue of him being my blue-side main. Sola has never had any of them.)

So let me ask you - what metric would you use? What metrics are there? Vet levels? That immediately removes anyone who's on a 50, and there are a ton of players who have hit 50 many times over and playing alts that aren't there yet. 
Costume? Back story? While indicative of creativity, they don't necessarily show experience in the broad spectrum of what the game has to offer. And, being more than comfortable with my own inability to make a decent costume (that other people like - I like them just fine), I'm inclined to rail against those with great costumes as they suggest ( to me only) that they spend more time in the creator than achieving objectives. That's not bad - just different from me. 

The accolades - while they don't give a broad spectrum of what the game has to offer, they suggest the player that has them knows how to get them and puts the time in. It's that knowledge that suggests they likely understand other game mechanics - like soft-cap defense, resist caps, etc. 

What other metric could one use? SG name? I belong to a huge SG - primarily because they take anyone. There are rules that a player has to agree to before they get the invite. But that's the only requirement. Other SG leaders likely team with folks a few times - not bothering with any metrics, just looking for amusing or interesting people. Or maybe just anyone with a pulse that's willing to team routinely. 

Character name? Only teaming with punny character names? That would be every bit as hit and miss as any other strategy. 
I don't suggest for one moment that my badge bias is a good method. I just know that I have only very rarely encountered a player with a high badge count that was a poor teammate. Nothing scientific, just my own anecdotal evidence. 

And what's amusing to me - is I met you through my weekly Master of Underground iTrials. In my mind, not many folks are willing to suffer through a bomb badge effort that's merely a casual player. But that's just my addled mind, I suppose. And for the record - you were always a welcome addition to the league, always very helpful. Often you and the FCM were the folks I sought out to invite first. That had more to do with my knowledge from previous runs that you had both done the task we were setting out to do. 
But, when a leader leads for the first time - they don't have that experience to pull from. They take what they can get, pulling from global friends, etc, and then lfg. If they're fortunate, they get more global friends on a successful run. If not, they have some assessment to do. 

 

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I dont PUG, can't stand them ugly ass mouth breathing lil things AND I'm a dog person. 

 

 

If you're talking the human kind(and I say that loosely), I haven't done one since the 2nd year i was on live.

I have a VG with people that I've known for years, I cannot go on a mission and be intimate with strangers as I'm killing baddies.

So VGmates or nothing, my one friend did one this past weekend said it sucked. No one talked, no one would joke around, and he spent more time keeping the tank alive than playing...so overall a blah experience. 

 

So ugly ass dogs or strangers on a team both get a thumbs down 👎

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On 5/9/2021 at 9:37 AM, Heraclea said:

I don't really want to go here, but I do 90% of my playing on Torchbearer.  TB is the server of the early adopters; we got a bit of an early start before Excelsior and Everlasting became the highest population servers.  Not sure if this translates into a greater level of familiarity with builds and mechanics, but I just don't have much trouble with pickup groups here.

 

It may just be that I usually bring armored characters to PUGs anyways. 

A completely different thread, this thought here! I kind of miss Torchbearer. I got RHW and Avoids the Green Stuff, arguably the two hardest badges to get on Torchbearer, and got them before anyone on Excelsior. Can't really recall, but before Excelsior existed, I think. Or maybe it was shortly after. But Stan Lee! His signing off in the letters he wrote was Excelsior. I remember wondering..what does that even mean? My dictionary back in 1976 ( I was 10) said it was woodshavings for furniture. Now, it has Stan Lee's name in the definition. Upward and onward. Something like that. How could I not go with Excelsior? 

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19 minutes ago, Ukase said:

So let me ask you - what metric would you use? What metrics are there?

AT and level.  These will, more reliably than anything yet mentioned, give you the best chance of success if you don't know who you're teaming with.  The game may not require the Holy Trinity, but that's not the same thing as saying it doesn't work.  It does work.  It's not the only way... but it is a safe way when you don't know the people you're teaming with and aren't willing to roll the dice.  If you are teaming with people you know, then it's much easier to be comfortable with any mix of ATs.

 

Nothing is a guarantee of course, but having some tanking, some support, and some damage at levels appropriate to the mission and difficulty is going to work nearly every time.  If it's a TF, and you're unsure, don't start out at +4.  Read the team on a mission first.  Then adjust.

 

Not saying badges don't tell you anything, but I don't think they're as reliable an indicator of how well a random team might work.   To say nothing of... how exactly would you form a team that way?  Do you advertise for people to have a minimum number of accolades?  I've definitely never seen that one.

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, ZemX said:

AT and level.

And when there are two Brutes and a Scrapper all loaded with set bonuses and the leader says "we need a tank," you know that you should find someone else to play with.

Edited by siolfir
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Just now, siolfir said:

And when there are two Brutes and a Scrapper loaded with set bonuses and the leader says "we need a tank," you know that you should find someone else to play with.

Fair.  I'm being loose with the definition of "Holy Trinity" here by saying tanking rather than Tanker and especially "support" rather than "healer".  And again, this is all only if you want to play it safe as possible.  I generally don't care enough.  If it doesn't work, it doesn't work.  It's RARE that things don't work, in my experience.  In most cases it does not, the problem is levels first and AT composition a more distant second.

 

It's a good point though.  When you run into someone who is being overly specific about team needs, they are doing YOU more of a favor than they are doing themselves, I think.  Same goes for team members who aren't willing to put up with your decision to run at a particular level or difficulty based on what you see happening.  Tell people up front you will adjust difficulty as you see fit so they know it can happen.  If they still want to complain about it after being invited and accepting... that's on them.  They're doing both of us a favor by leaving.

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I donno man, having main'ed a bots/traps MM, I get the shaft on the "holy trinity" concept often, but I'm not really Damage, I'm not really a Tank, and I'm definitely not "healz".

But, my build can legit solo +4/x8 ITFs, so having a team is more a 'Oh, I guess you guys get rewards too...'

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I know it’s been said in this thread and countless others but the fact is you should be the PUG you wish was always the case.  Lead one and call shots/tactics as you wish.  Or arm yourself for PUG meltdowns by carrying temps/pets or whatever.  Or do what I do and only take durable AT’s on PUG’s.  I won’t take my non-incarnate MM’s on PUG’s at +4/x8 because I know at 49 All but my T3 henchman is going to be mostly useless other than as disposable aggro fodder, and my support capabilities will be equally neutered.  But I can throw a decently slotted scrapper onto the team and contribute some damage and survive (usually) without much effort.  I’ll save my lowbie MM/Controller/Dom for coordinated teaming with my SG or other known-friendlies.  

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Arbegla said:

I donno man, having main'ed a bots/traps MM, I get the shaft on the "holy trinity" concept often

How?  I join PUGs with MMs all the time.  I play Stalkers mostly and there are definitely more of you guys around than Stalkers. 😛

 

I've never played an MM but even I know they can do damage and support at the very least so why wouldn't someone count you in those roles?  I don't know if you have any aggro management though.  Tanking isn't just surviving.  It's surviving while controlling aggro.  Brutes and Tankers have the best tools for drawing aggro and holding it.  Doesn't mean nobody else can do it or do things like it (or do things that make it irrelevant).  Like I said, this is about playing it safe with unknown players who may or may not turn out to be MMs that can solo ITFs at max settings.  A LOT of other things work and IOs and Incarnates change almost ALL the rules to boot.  These other things just aren't AS likely to work in any random pick-up team is the only point I am making.

 

I still vastly prefer collecting 8 randos and going.  It only sometimes ends up with the entire team in a +6 Arachnos jail on the FIRST spawn.  (But to be clear... I didn't put that team together. 🤪)

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3 minutes ago, ZemX said:

How?  I join PUGs with MMs all the time.  I play Stalkers mostly and there are definitely more of you guys around than Stalkers. 😛

 

I've never played an MM but even I know they can do damage and support at the very least so why wouldn't someone count you in those roles?  I don't know if you have any aggro management though.  Tanking isn't just surviving.  It's surviving while controlling aggro.  Brutes and Tankers have the best tools for drawing aggro and holding it.  Doesn't mean nobody else can do it or do things like it (or do things that make it irrelevant).  Like I said, this is about playing it safe with unknown players who may or may not turn out to be MMs that can solo ITFs at max settings.  A LOT of other things work and IOs and Incarnates change almost ALL the rules to boot.  These other things just aren't AS likely to work in any random pick-up team is the only point I am making.

 

I still vastly prefer collecting 8 randos and going.  It only sometimes ends up with the entire team in a +6 Arachnos jail on the FIRST spawn.  (But to be clear... I didn't put that team together. 🤪)

 

I run fold space on my bot/traps nowadays.  It's a beautiful thing.

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2 minutes ago, fitzsimmons said:

 

I run fold space on my bot/traps nowadays.  It's a beautiful thing.

Again, people keep piping up to say what else beside the trinity works and I keep saying... yeah man... I know.  That's not the point.

 

It's about playing the odds, not just hoping people will surprise you pleasantly.   Personally, I do prefer the latter, but that's not who I was responding to with that.

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Trinity-based divisions are hard to nail down in this game... In a world with Masterminds, Offender-build Defenders, Swiss army knife Peacebringers, Corruptors and all the rest, you can't just nail things down neatly by looking at someone's AT.

 

Me? If I want to guess how a team is likely to handle a particular run, I usually start by looking at the characters' levels in relation to the "suggested" level of the task at hand, and the difficulty the leader's picked. Even a really good player is going to be under the gun trying to bring a level 35 along on a level 50 leader's +4 ITF or Lady Grey. If half of the team is 35 and the leader still insists on that difficulty... Oh boy. 

 

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3 hours ago, Arbegla said:

I donno man, having main'ed a bots/traps MM, I get the shaft on the "holy trinity" concept often, but I'm not really Damage, I'm not really a Tank, and I'm definitely not "healz".

But, my build can legit solo +4/x8 ITFs, so having a team is more a 'Oh, I guess you guys get rewards too...'

Most well-built MM's can solo +4/x8 reliably from about 45 onwards.  But my issue with PUG's on my MM's is if I'm below 50, I'm sidekicked to 49, meaning my henchmen are 48'ish.  So for them, they are swinging at +6's which is largely going to be a whiffest and a meat grinder for them.  And, unlike my henchmen, I canNOT control the rest of the PUG team.  Much as I try.....

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15 hours ago, Coyotedancer said:

Trinity-based divisions are hard to nail down in this game... In a world with Masterminds, Offender-build Defenders, Swiss army knife Peacebringers, Corruptors and all the rest, you can't just nail things down neatly by looking at someone's AT.

There's no need to nail anything down or be neat.  I brought this up as a way to improve the odds over simply getting 8 randoms of any level and AT.  That's why I said AT and Level matter more than anything else people were bringing up.  I'm not saying you need to consider AT for every one of the eight slots.

 

I'm not really saying anything that isn't already done by most PUG leaders putting together a tough TF at the very least.  Get at least one Brute or Tanker at the TF level and a couple support and you pretty much have tanking and support covered.  And support is a whole list of different ATs.  Not just defenders.  That's pretty common knowledge.  It's been a whole lot of years since I've seen anybody asking specifically for an empathy defender and if you do see that... you know to steer clear.  Because that's someone who doesn't really understand the game.

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, ZemX said:

It's been a whole lot of years since I've seen anybody asking specifically for an empathy defender and if you do see that... you know to steer clear.  Because that's someone who doesn't really understand the game.

 

There was a whole lot of that in April 2019 through July 2019 when Homecoming first started and the WoW and WoW clone players came to check out City of Heroes for the first time.  I couldn't move about ten feet without encountering a level 50 Empath Defender with only the tier one attack, and the LFG channel was flooded with requests for Tankers and Empath Defenders.  Thankfully, the vast majority of them quickly moved on.

Edited by Apparition
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52 minutes ago, Apparition said:

 

There was a whole lot of that in April 2019 through July 2019 when Homecoming first started and the WoW and WoW clone players came to check out City of Heroes for the first time.  I couldn't move about ten feet without encountering a level 50 Empath Defender with only the tier one attack, and the LFG channel was flooded with requests for Tankers and Empath Defenders.  Thankfully, the vast majority of them quickly moved on.

Well, now I don't feel so bad about missing out on HC's opening.

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13 minutes ago, ZemX said:

Well, now I don't feel so bad about missing out on HC's opening.

 

Indeed.  When Homecoming first launched, it was big news on the various MMOG related web sites and Twitters, and a lot of WoW and WoW clone players starved for content on their home games decided to check it out.  They all power leveled Tankers, Brutes, Scrappers, Blasters, and Empathy Defenders to level 50 without any understanding of the game, ran the Incarnate trials, went "That's it?" and quit.  There were a whole lot of them the first four months or so of Homecoming, dying down around August or September 2019.  I'd kind of like to see their character names freed 'cause some of them had great character names and they're just never coming back.  But I digress.

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I love PUG's, and more times than not I don't worry about the team makeup.  I can adjust the level accordingly.  For me, its all about having fun, and hopefully helping someone else have fun.

 

As for the speed/kill all confusion - I've said it somewhere else.  I do not join speed TF's, under any circumstance.  I hate spending however long just chasing after everyone else.

If someone lets me know its a speed after joining (but not advertising it that way), I will politely back out and move along.  No hard feelings.

When I put together a TF, my instructions at the beginning are simple .  Not a speed, or a kill all.  Just have fun.

 

I hate to hear that so many of you are against PUG's, but I also hate hearing the horror stories you guys tell when you decide to join one.

Maybe its all in the mindset - who knows.  I enjoy them, so I overlook the bad experiences.  You guys hate the, so the bad times are magnified.

 

 

 

 

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I mainly PUG cos my shifts have changed at work so I’m on at weird times/ my friends are playing less. I’ve noticed an increase in newer players. Whilst that can be a bit of a challenge, getting used to them not knowing stuff (certainly on SFs) for example, but really I think it’s great there are new people and have been enjoying showing people the ropes. It’s great new blood is tricking in.

 

Before starting ive gotten used to saying “has everyone done this?” and then explaining the bits that I think would catch people out (travelling to faultline, yin’s computers, respec trial ambushes etc). I think it’s more about If you want it to go right, try and help at the start. I think ‘most’ people are open to compromise if you explain it out.
 

Keep PuGging, people PuG’d with us when we were new.

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On 5/10/2021 at 1:28 PM, Ironblade said:
On 5/10/2021 at 9:51 AM, ZemX said:

But I'm a filthy casual.

Filthy casuals everywhere!  Go purple your warshade.

 

Casual is THE lifestyle!

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I speed levelled and incarnated an Ice/Temp/Ice Blaster.  PUGing Incarnate Trials (the easy ones) is usually okay.  I still get peeved when a prisoner escapes.  How many AFKers do we got? is all i can think.

 

I am in a "project team" that I joined late and is slow rolling through all content, meeting once a week.  I had designed one Blaster for that, then realized it used villain epic powers as part of the build strategy.  sigh.  So I levelled a clone of Ice/Temp/Ice Blaster to run in that.  Since I have it and plan for it to be a long term thing (once I farmed it to appropriate level) I started running the TFs with it for badges/merits.  This non incarnate version may end up being my next main if it ever 50s lol.  

 

Joined a random PUG Posi2 last night.  I prefer to do the TFs in order.  That is just another quirk I got.  If I dont see a Posi 1 tonight I might lead one.  Eeeek.  It was a little rough.  But here is the thing, I do not mind that.  I have never been a 'great player.' and I know this.  I main Brutes and I Scrapper-lock on crap the teams care nothing about way too often.  I survive and get inf/exp etc but the value to the team on those decisions is questionable 90% time.  errr 95%   I also am not great on Blasters.  I love to Nuke a fresh spawn even if I dont have a nuke (posi2) and not enough of the team is near me.  (I did not die once!)  But again, not great play.  But there were some real new players in the team last night.  As much as I lovbe that (and i do, new CoH players are like puppies, just cute lol) it does not make for a smooth flow.  Posi 2 has some weird maps and that kept splitting the team.  Only have so many ATT after all.  There were 13 deaths (someone put up a master counter.  That was funny)  But we completed and the time was not horrible, on the clock and/or perception wise.  I had a good time.  

 

I enjoy this type of PUG.  To me it is my native element.  For whatever reason Redside teams (when you could get them) were more or less like this.  I think because people are less invested Redside, do not know the ATs, are doing concept characters, not throwing tons of I/Os on it, whatever.  But Redside teams always feel like the dog's dinner.  You get what you get.  That is fine with me up until people start screwing with me getting any merits and the TF is dragging out into the takes forever realm.  Or the perfect storm, takes forever and fails.

 

I ...may....lead som TFs on this Blaster to get the ones I want in order.  My game time is short each week and if you want to get stuff done you have to step up.  Sigh, leading PUGs Blueside.  Where did I go wrong Lord Recluse?

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1 hour ago, Snarky said:

 

 

I ...may....lead som TFs on this Blaster to get the ones I want in order.  My game time is short each week and if you want to get stuff done you have to step up.  Sigh, leading PUGs Blueside.  Where did I go wrong Lord Recluse?

 

Let me know approximately when you plan on doing this - would love to run some PUGs with you

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