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Barrier Control: Force Fields for Controllers and Dominators


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Hello all! Now that my proposal for Light Control has been properly drafted out, I decided to move onto another obvious gap in the Control powersets: one that involves force fields, but in a ways that disable or otherwise occupy enemies rather than supporting allies like Force Fields currently does.

I was also inspired by the deadlier applications of barriers that the Force Fields set doesn’t really explore, heavily alluding to the main four ways of exploiting energy shields for fun and profit (which powers correlate to which I’ll leave to the reader to decide!), namely:

  • Popping:A shield rapidly expanding over you hurts, but be glad it’s not expanding inside of your head instead.

  • Cutting: “These barriers have rather sharp edges...move a muscle and you’ll get sliced.”

  • Crushing: “I could squeeze you into a fine paste, but I won’t.”

  • Internal Blockages: “If I can stop you from passing through, imagine what I could do with your bloodstream.”

Additionally, I wanted to avoid too much overlap with the sorts of control that already exists in the Force Fields powerset – as such, I tried to refrain from providing any functionality that it could already potentially provide. There might be a potential Barrier Control/Force Fields player out there, after all!

I’ll start off by detailing the different kinds of summons that are available to Barrier Control and the general logic behind the powerset before delving into each of the different powers separately.

Looking forward to feedback as usual. Is this a powerset that you’d be interested in using? Is it relatively balanced? Any clarifications required about how any of the powers might work? Hope to hear plenty of responses from people!

Barrier Type Table

Type

Created By

Properties

Energy Barrier

T2: Razor Bubble

T4: Suppression Zone

T6: Mass Detention

  • Durability = fragile (similar to a Minion Henchman pet), tougher with Domination

  • Target = single enemy

  • Effects:

    • Immobilizes enemy in place (high magnitude)

    • Enemy within can only target/affect the barrier

    • If summoned over an existing barrier, replaces it instead (can’t be stacked, but transfers buffs)

Kinetic Barrier

T5: Kinetic Barrier

  • Durability = several Energy Barriers worth of health, tougher with Domination

  • Target = specified area in a dome

  • Effects:

    • Keeps enemies from entering or exiting (allies pass freely)

    • Enemies and allies can’t target/affect things that aren’t also inside or outside the barrier with them

Compression Field

T8: Compression Field

  • Durability = several Energy Barriers worth of health (less than Kinetic Barrier), tougher with Domination

  • Target = single enemy along with nearby foes

  • Effects:

    • Brings enemies together by gradually shrinking

      • Can’t bring in more enemies than the initial group

    • Deals some damage over time due to compressive force

 

Something that’ll be quite noticeable about this powerset is that it actually lacks any form of AoE Holds. The one Hold that it does have (5201158_T3Detain.png.ce894f8ff9859951340fc8a530b49ebb.png T3: Detain) is a toggle, meaning only one enemy can ever be Held by this powerset at a time (it’s a rather strong Hold to compensate though).

This was quite intentional – Barrier Control is heavily focused on soft control, with its ability to split up a group of enemies to reduce damage coming their way, and numerous (albeit destructible) summons to keep them occupied.

Borne from this is its rather unique final power, in 166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion. Instead of a pet summon (that’s pretty much covered by the rest of Barrier Control’s powers), it sacrifices all nearby barriers for a stun and widespread damage, inflicting more damage for each additional barrier surrounding enemies at the time.

Barrier Control also uses a good amount of toggle powers; once deactivated, they’ll take a while to come back online. This was meant to both emulate how a force field user in fiction may sometimes lose focus and need time to recuperate, and to add a risk-reward element to 166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion.

Barrier Control

Quote

“You can create and manipulate solid barriers of energy to entrap and restrain your foes. These barriers can do a variety of things, such as creating cover, and hindering movement. However, they are not immune to damage, and can be destroyed by enemies in a few hits. While these constructs cannot be naturally healed, they can be replaced with new barriers, and they can be buffed like any teammate.”

Power Table

 

Power

Level

Effect

2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png

Explosive Sphere

1

Ranged, Moderate DMG(Smashing/Energy), Foe Knockdown, -Fly

132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png

Razor Bubble

1

Ranged, Moderate DoT(Lethal/Energy), Foe Immobilize, -Fly, Chance to Summon Energy Barrier

5201158_T3Detain.png.ce894f8ff9859951340fc8a530b49ebb.png

Detain

2

Toggle: Foe Hold, Moderate DoT(Smashing/Energy)

1224920388_T4SuppressionZone.png.beb2e3996aef5207f92098ee06fc56cd.png

Suppression Zone

6

Ranged (Location AoE), Foe -Movement, Chance to Summon Energy Barrier

561848556_T5KineticBarrier.png.6c71c77cfd942a399be3b5611d8e2b35.png

Kinetic Barrier

8

Toggle: Ranged (Location AoE), Foe Repel, Summon Kinetic Barrier

1292548064_T6MassDetention.png.174b261cbfab9f449beddda34c10467c.png

Mass Detention

12

Ranged (Targeted AoE), Minor DoT(Smashing/Energy), Foe Immobilize, -Fly, Summon Energy Barrier

1113680919_T7BarrierEmpowerment.png.0e16ab7b37b0c5fa549d8b7059c54b32.png

Barrier Empowerment

18

PBAoE, Barrier +Absorb, +Regen, +Def(All), +Res(All), +MaxHP, Special

1029728148_T8CompressionField.png.66d7317970763db77dfe094f83e0c453.png

Compression Field

26

Toggle: Ranged (Targeted AoE), Minor DoT(Smashing/Energy), Foe Attract, Summon Compression Field

166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png

Barrier Implosion

32

PBAoE, Barrier Self Destruct: Extreme DMG(Smashing/Energy), Foe Disorient, Knockdown

Powers

2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Sphere

You create a tiny, spherical barrier that rapidly expands over an enemy before dissipating, dealing moderate damage to the target and knocking them down. This power can bring flying foes to the ground, and can deal bonus damage when used against targets inside your barriers.

Damage

Moderate (Smashing/Energy)

Recharge

Moderate (6s)

Duration

10s

Minimum Level

1

Effects

Ranged

Foe Knockdown, -Fly

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy
Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Knockback Distance

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Ranged Damage

Knockback

Universal Damage

 

132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Razor Bubble

You create a razor sharp barrier around the lower half of your target, keeping them immobilized to avoid further harm, and gradually damaging them over time. An entire barrier of energy can sometimes form around your foe, forcing your target to destroy it before they can target anything else.

Damage

Moderate DoT (Lethal/Energy)

Recharge

Fast (4s)

Duration

27.94s

Minimum Level

1

Effects

Ranged

Foe Immobilize (Mag 4), -Fly, Chance to Summon Energy Barrier (20%)

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy
Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Immobilize

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Immobilize

Ranged Damage

 

5201158_T3Detain.png.ce894f8ff9859951340fc8a530b49ebb.png T3: Detain

Encases a single foe in a sturdy barrier, rendering most targets completely helpless. Even if the target is powerful enough to resist this power’s hold effect, the surrounding energy field will still inflict Smashing and Energy damage over time as the barrier crushes against them.

Damage

Moderate DoT (Smashing/Energy)

Endurance

0.33/s

Recharge

Moderate (8s)

Minimum Level

2

Effects

Toggle: Ranged

Foe Hold (Mag 6.5)

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy
Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Hold Duration

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Holds

Ranged Damage

Universal Damage

 

1224920388_T4SuppressionZone.png.beb2e3996aef5207f92098ee06fc56cd.png T4: Suppression Zone

You surround the selected area in a weak, suppressive field of energy. Any foes that pass through the Suppression Zone will have their movement dramatically slowed, and cannot jump or fly. Additionally, the surrounding energy may sometimes solidify into a fragile barrier around them, which they must break free of to move or target others.

Recharge

Slow (60s)

Duration

45s

Minimum Level

6

Effects

Ranged (Location Area of Effect)

Foe -Fly, -Jump, -Speed, Chance to Summon Energy Barrier (2%)

Enhancements

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Enhance Slow

Set Categories

Slow Movement

 

561848556_T5KineticBarrier.png.6c71c77cfd942a399be3b5611d8e2b35.png T5: Kinetic Barrier

You create a dome of energy that prevents enemies inside from escaping, and enemies outside from entering, while letting you and your allies pass through freely. The Kinetic Barrier prevents foes and allies from targeting each other unless they are both inside or outside the sphere respectively. It can also be destroyed by enemies after sustaining enough damage, or deactivated prematurely, ending the effect.

Endurance

0.45/s

Recharge

Slow (30s)

Minimum Level

8

Effects

Toggle: Ranged (Location Area of Effect)

Foe Repel, Summon Kinetic Barrier

Enhancements

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

None

 

1292548064_T6MassDetention.png.174b261cbfab9f449beddda34c10467c.png T6: Mass Detention

Traps a group of foes inside separate barriers of energy, dealing minor damage over time as they are slowly squeezed within. While inside them, they are unable to move, and are only able to target their restraints until they are destroyed. Enemies can remain immobilized for some time after breaking out of your energy barriers.

Damage

Minor DoT (Smashing/Energy)

Recharge

Slow (90s)

Duration

27.94s

Minimum Level

12

Effects

Ranged (Targeted Area of Effect)

Foe Immobilize (Mag 3), -Fly, Summon Energy Barrier

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy

Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Immobilize

Enhance Range

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Ranged AoE Damage

Immobilize

Universal Damage

 

1113680919_T7BarrierEmpowerment.png.0e16ab7b37b0c5fa549d8b7059c54b32.png T7: Barrier Empowerment

You reinforce all nearby barriers with further energy for a short amount of time, bolstering their maximum health, regeneration, defence, and damage resistance. The extra layers of energy also allow your barriers to absorb some damage. Additionally, the chance of Suppression Zone and Razor Bubble generating an energy barrier is increased for some time afterwards.

Recharge

Very Long (240s)

Duration

30s

Minimum Level

18

Effects

Point Blank Area of Effect

Barrier +Absorb, +Regen, +Def(All), +Res(All), +MaxHP, Special

Enhancements

Enhance Defence

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Heal

Enhance Resistance

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Defence

Healing/Absorb

Resist Damage

 

1029728148_T8CompressionField.png.66d7317970763db77dfe094f83e0c453.png T8: Compression Field

Surrounds a group of enemies with a barrier of energy that begins to constrict them together, inflicting minor damage over time as it shrinks. The Compression Field can be destroyed by enemies after sustaining enough damage, or deactivated prematurely, ending the effect.

Damage

Minor DoT (Smashing/Energy)

Endurance

1.04/s

Recharge

Slow (60s)

Minimum Level

26

Effects

Toggle: Ranged (Targeted Area of Effect)

Foe Attract, Summon Compression Field

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy

Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Recharge

Set Categories

Ranged AoE Damage

Universal Damage

 

166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion

You send a wave of energy out around you and into your nearby barriers, dealing minor damage to nearby enemies and knocking them down as it passes them by. After a brief period of time these barriers violently collapse onto themselves before expiring, knocking enemies down again and dealing a high amount of Smashing and Energy damage that increases with the number of barriers surrounding your targets at the time.

Damage

Extreme (Smashing/Energy)

Recharge

Long (180s)

Duration

14.9s

Minimum Level

32

Effects

Point Blank Area of Effect

Foe Disorient (Mag 3), Knockdown, Barrier Self Destruct

Enhancements

Enhance Accuracy

Enhance Damage

Reduce Endurance Cost

Enhance Knockback Distance

Enhance Recharge

Enhance Stun Duration

Set Categories

Melee AoE Damage

Knockback

Stuns

Universal Damage

Edited by Blackfeather
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  • Blackfeather changed the title to Barrier Control: Force Fields for Controllers and Dominators

Will also give @GraspingVileTerror a nudge - as it turns out, Barrier Control is indeed petless, so thought this might be something you might like to take a look at. Or at least, not reliant on a pet T9, and the summons it does create are just constructs that don't really behave like pets. Would be interested in hearing your feedback on it!

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You've caught my curiousity, @Blackfeather, but it's a little difficult for me to imagine how such a Set might play out exactly.  It certainly breaks from conventional Control models, and I am entirely okay with that, but it does mean that it's hard to really wrap my head around what it would feel like.  Maybe someone like @oedipus_tex can work with you in making a demo version of the Set for use on personal virtual servers, and get some feedback that way?  

 

As ever, though, thank you for your continued efforts to enrich the game and this community with your top-tier quality posts.  It's very much appreciated.

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2 minutes ago, GraspingVileTerror said:

You've caught my curiousity, @Blackfeather, but it's a little difficult for me to imagine how such a Set might play out exactly.  It certainly breaks from conventional Control models, and I am entirely okay with that, but it does mean that it's hard to really wrap my head around what it would feel like.  Maybe someone like @oedipus_tex can work with you in making a demo version of the Set for use on personal virtual servers, and get some feedback that way?  

 

As ever, though, thank you for your continued efforts to enrich the game and this community with your top-tier quality posts.  It's very much appreciated.

 

Glad you like them, and thanks! They're definitely fun to properly flesh out.

 

From a broad perspective, I was aiming to make a powerset that could demonstrate the wide variety of ways force fields have been used in fiction, and wrap it up in a way that translated well into the game.

 

The elements that I did identify, along with how that affected how the powerset was shaped are as follows:

  • Force field users are versatile and powerful => Barrier Control has a broad toolkit that can deal damage, reposition enemies, and lock them down
  • Force field users need to focus => Barrier Control has multiple toggle powers to represent them concentrating on keeping their force fields up
  • Force field users can be overwhelmed => Barrier Control's shields are all destructible, and combined with multiple toggles, leaves the set vulnerable if they are all broken

Barrier Control is made up of many powers that summon immobile, damage-less 'pets' in all of its shields that do a variety of different things. The most lockdown heavy of these are its energy barriers, with 1292548064_T6MassDetention.png.174b261cbfab9f449beddda34c10467c.png T6: Mass Detention being the standout in that regard, trapping a group of enemies in separate, destructible bubbles.

 

The idea of multiple, destructible constructs was something that began in my Ice Control buff thread, and further elaborated on by @Vanden here - essentially occupying enemies by trapping them in something that they needed to break out of.

 

This was something I decided to apply to basically the entirety of Barrier Control, not only because it seemed to really fit the powerset, but it also provided a nice way of making it rather unique.

 

Barrier Control Scenarios

At the lower levels, I envision Barrier Control relying on 561848556_T5KineticBarrier.png.6c71c77cfd942a399be3b5611d8e2b35.png T5: Kinetic Barrier to split groups of enemies up, while 5201158_T3Detain.png.ce894f8ff9859951340fc8a530b49ebb.png T3: Detain takes out a single strong opponent, heavily reducing oncoming damage. Occasional energy barriers from 1224920388_T4SuppressionZone.png.beb2e3996aef5207f92098ee06fc56cd.png T4: Suppression Zone could also occupy your foes as well.

 

Once 1292548064_T6MassDetention.png.174b261cbfab9f449beddda34c10467c.png T6: Mass Detention comes online, Barrier Control has its bread and butter alpha-strike breaker; useful for most regular encounters. 1113680919_T7BarrierEmpowerment.png.0e16ab7b37b0c5fa549d8b7059c54b32.png T7: Barrier Empowerment is Barrier Control's emergency button, akin to how AoE Holds are in other sets, bolstering what force fields there are to allow them to hold out for longer under enemy fire.

 

166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion is basically a stand in for the pet summon power that's usually found in Control sets, trading that for immediate, widespread damage and control, with the caveat that it's reliant on the other powers in the set to work at maximum efficiency - the more shields destroyed, the stronger it is.

 

Hope this helps a little!

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Looks pretty cool! My one nitpick is "Cutting Field" sounds like an AoE but is single target. Maybe "Cutting Barrier"?

 With good sound effects it would be a fun set to play.  It looks so complex though it has little chance of being developed.

 

 

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2 hours ago, ninja surprise said:

Looks pretty cool! My one nitpick is "Cutting Field" sounds like an AoE but is single target. Maybe "Cutting Barrier"?

 With good sound effects it would be a fun set to play.  It looks so complex though it has little chance of being developed.

 

Thanks for your viewpoints! I changed it to 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Shield along with adjusting the flavour text a little to match. That should give it some pairing with 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Shield name wise without repeating itself too much (there's three powers with "Barrier" in their names already).

 

And glad to hear it'd be something you'd like to play - I definitely tried to imagine myself using the set in-game whilst designing it, so I'm glad that reflected well in the proposal itself. Out of curiosity, which parts of Barrier Control do you think would be the most complex components to implement?

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"Shield" is perhaps misleading, and suggests something defensive.

 

Let's see . . .

Barricade?
Blockade?

Blockage?

Boundary?

Impediment?

Limit?

Obstacle?

 

Any of these seems like potential candidates, @Blackfeather?

 

Edit:

Explosive Obstacle

Cutting Boundary

 

eh?

 

Edited by GraspingVileTerror
Two examples added.
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I very much like the idea, and really like the mental image of using force field textured spheres and shapes along with the various "bouncy" sounds.

 

I do have some thoughts about the power names 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Shield and 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Shield. I think that it might be confusing for offensive powers to have "shield" in the name. Are you avoiding the word "bubble"?

How about "Bubble Bomb" for the tier 1? or maybe "Unstable Bubble"?

"Cutting Bubble" for the tier 2 sounds nice and idiosyncratic, like a super power should.

Edited by BZRKR
had another T1 idea
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5 hours ago, GraspingVileTerror said:

"Shield" is perhaps misleading, and suggests something defensive.

 

Let's see . . .

Barricade?
Blockade?

Blockage?

Boundary?

Impediment?

Limit?

Obstacle?

 

Any of these seems like potential candidates, @Blackfeather?

 

Edit:

Explosive Obstacle

Cutting Boundary

 

eh?

 

🤔

 

Hmm...thanks for the suggestions, and I'll definitely keep them in mind! I think it's okay if the shield's behaviour is described offensively ('cutting', 'explosive', 'charge'), but it's true that they're very blunt and straight to the point name wise.

 

If I were to change them, I'd probably think about something along the lines of "Sphere" or "Globe" (e.g. 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Sphere and 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Sphere), maybe. But I'm open to more suggestions - might ping @Tyrannical to ask for help in this case, given their experience with creating powersets and likewise naming their powers, I'm sure they might have some name ideas as well (plus would be interested in hearing their thoughts on Barrier Control too).

Edited by Blackfeather
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12 hours ago, BZRKR said:

I very much like the idea, and really like the mental image of using force field textured spheres and shapes along with the various "bouncy" sounds.

 

I do have some thoughts about the power names 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Shield and 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Shield. I think that it might be confusing for offensive powers to have "shield" in the name. Are you avoiding the word "bubble"?

How about "Bubble Bomb" for the tier 1? or maybe "Unstable Bubble"?

"Cutting Bubble" for the tier 2 sounds nice and idiosyncratic, like a super power should.

 

Thanks! Glad to hear it's conceptually something you'd like to play.

 

Name wise, I'm mostly fine with the T1 and T2 powers here, but it is true that most powers in the game with the phrase "shield" in them are supportive ones in nature, so I see the point. I did consider 561848556_T5KineticBarrier.png.6c71c77cfd942a399be3b5611d8e2b35.png T5: Kinetic Bubble as one of its initial names, along with 1029728148_T8CompressionField.png.66d7317970763db77dfe094f83e0c453.png T8: Compression Bubble instead.

 

It's certainly not without precedence either, with the Force Fields powerset having two of them named that way in Dispersion Bubble and Force Bubble. And of course, I did take some inspiration from its naming scheme. It does make me wonder though: if there's a Repulsion Bomb (low damage group knockdown power) and a Power Burst, (high damage single target knockback power) perhaps there's room for a 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Repulsion Burst?

 

Along with this, I could definitely see 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Razor Bubble as something that could work...I'm also lowkey considering reverting back to 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Field despite the mention from @ninja surprise given the existence of Detention Field and how it's a single target power in Force Field, but it's nice to think more on the name and the kind of flavour it evokes. Thanks for the food for thought!

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This an excellent concept and well written post. I agree that Force Fields are a rich area in Superhero lore with a lot of opportunities for set design. 

 

Its hard for me to evaluate how a set will perform without seeing it built out in a prototype. The sets I've proto'ed have often dramatically changed between the whiteboard and development phases. The power I'd like to think more about is the T9, mainly because of it having both a long cooldown and an enemy flag requirement. In general, what I've found with control powers is that rather than include a conditional, its often more balanced to just let the power apply the majority of the effect itself, and only provide a minor bonus conditional. However, variation between the sets is also a goal, so it may turn out okay in context.

 

In terms of viability, most of what you've proposed here is very graphically doable, since Force Field already provides most of the particles. The Force Field set of particles in my experience tend to be among the easier to repurpose and recolor, which is a big draw. I'm not sure what process Homecoming uses to build particle systems, but the only method I've seen is brute force, which is challenging and time consuming.

 

Great post.

Edited by oedipus_tex
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9 hours ago, Blackfeather said:

 

🤔

 

If I were to change them, I'd probably think about something along the lines of "Sphere" or "Globe" (e.g. 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Sphere and 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Cutting Sphere), maybe. But I'm open to more suggestions - might ping @Tyrannical to ask for help in this case, given their experience with creating powersets and likewise naming their powers, I'm sure they might have some name ideas as well (plus would be interested in hearing their thoughts on Barrier Control too).

 

My take would be to go for similar wording to other existing powers. 'Explosive Force' and 'Anchoring Field' come to mind for the T1 and T2 powers.

 

As for the rest of the powerset it mostly follows the typical Control formula, but I'm a bit sceptical over not having a dedicated AoE Hold ability, and instead having a massive damaging power, which is uncharacteristic of powersets of this type.

 

I'd personally substitute Barrier Implosion for an AoE hold, and bring it down to a T8 power. I would also probably put Compression Field as the new T9 and rework it into a pet that functions much like Gravity Control's Singularity.

 

I think with those changes today have a pretty solid Control set.

 

 

Edited by Tyrannical
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On 10/14/2021 at 9:00 AM, Wavicle said:

It's a neat idea, but honestly I'd like them to make the current Force Fields better first.

 

That's fair enough! I want more Control powersets is all, and the Invisible Woman is definitely a Controller, so here I am. 😅

 

Have you checked out @The Philotic Knight's two posts on Force Field buffs? They're quite solid! Pun not intended.

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Just now, Blackfeather said:

 

That's fair enough! I want more Control powersets is all, and the Invisible Woman is definitely a Controller, so here I am. 😅

 

Have you checked out @The Philotic Knight's two posts on Force Field buffs? They're quite solid! Pun not intended.

 

I also want more Control sets. 🙂

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20 hours ago, oedipus_tex said:

This an excellent concept and well written post. I agree that Force Fields are a rich area in Superhero lore with a lot of opportunities for set design. 

 

Its hard for me to evaluate how a set will perform without seeing it built out in a prototype. The sets I've proto'ed have often dramatically changed between the whiteboard and development phases. The power I'd like to think more about is the T9, mainly because of it having both a long cooldown and an enemy flag requirement. In general, what I've found with control powers is that rather than include a conditional, its often more balanced to just let the power apply the majority of the effect itself, and only provide a minor bonus conditional. However, variation between the sets is also a goal, so it may turn out okay in context.

 

In terms of viability, most of what you've proposed here is very graphically doable, since Force Field already provides most of the particles. The Force Field set of particles in my experience tend to be among the easier to repurpose and recolor, which is a big draw. I'm not sure what process Homecoming uses to build particle systems, but the only method I've seen is brute force, which is challenging and time consuming.

 

Great post.

 

Glad you like it! I was definitely going for a very Invisible Woman kind of feel in terms of exploring the various kinds of things that Force Fields can do in fiction. And certainly I'm happy to hear that in terms of graphics, it'd be a rather easy powerset to implement.

 

Unfortunately, I'm not confident in my ability to actually turn these writeups into actual powersets in-game; it sounds like a rather complex process, not to mention the game server itself needs a Windows machine, to my knowledge. That being said, I'm thinking of writing up a 'strategy guide' of sorts in the original post, which should hopefully describe the kinds of ways in which Barrier Control could be used, to help give a better feel for the set.

 

166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion is supposed to be a replacement for a pet power, so its primary function is to deal damage, while locking down some enemies on the side. Since it causes all nearby barriers to detonate, it should be able to do widespread damage to a very large number of enemies, or stack multiple barriers down onto the same group to concentrate it a little. The bonus damage there was meant to try and encourage some choice between sacrificing most of Barrier Control's toolkit for a little while or sacrificing less for some respectable damage instead.

 

Perhaps I could get rid of the stronger stun depending on how many barriers were imploded in the process? There's probably no need for the extra magnitude, and Barrier Control is decently equipped to deal with enemies with Mez protection anyhow. Might emphasise the damage aspect of the power more that way.

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1 hour ago, Blackfeather said:

 

Glad you like it! I was definitely going for a very Invisible Woman kind of feel in terms of exploring the various kinds of things that Force Fields can do in fiction. And certainly I'm happy to hear that in terms of graphics, it'd be a rather easy powerset to implement.

 

Unfortunately, I'm not confident in my ability to actually turn these writeups into actual powersets in-game; it sounds like a rather complex process, not to mention the game server itself needs a Windows machine, to my knowledge. That being said, I'm thinking of writing up a 'strategy guide' of sorts in the original post, which should hopefully describe the kinds of ways in which Barrier Control could be used, to help give a better feel for the set.

 

 

I think if you have the skill level to write a post as in depth as this, you probably have the skill level to write the actual powerset. But, it's a lengthy process, and writing the set is only partof the equation. Unless you only care about having the set on your private server, you need to find a server to adopt them. So far I haven't found a server to house the couple of sets I've modded (on the other hand, haven't really advertised them either).

 

In general, not needing new particles cuts development time down by around 90%. At least that's my experience. What you're proposing here could probably mostly reuse existing particles, which means no creating and toying with FX and PART files. I don't mean to make it sound easy but since you seem to have a strong grasp of the game's mechanics, its certainly doable.

 

I attached a few sample DEF file from the public I24 code if you decide to bring your write ups closer to prototypes. DEFs are where most of the actual code definitions go in a powerset (but not graphics/animations, those are in the PFX files you'll see referenced in the DEF). Interestingly, if a power uses the exact same animation and powers as another power, you can keep the same PFX file and just change the DEF and get the same particles and animation but a new effect. Of course, its typical to copy and paste the PFX file with a new name, but that's where a lot of time savings occur.

 

Dominator_Control_Mind_Control.powers Controller_Buff_Force_Field.powers

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On 10/14/2021 at 10:05 PM, Tyrannical said:

My take would be to go for similar wording to other existing powers. 'Explosive Force' and 'Anchoring Field' come to mind for the T1 and T2 powers.

 

As for the rest of the powerset it mostly follows the typical Control formula, but I'm a bit sceptical over not having a dedicated AoE Hold ability, and instead having a massive damaging power, which is uncharacteristic of powersets of this type.

 

I'd personally substitute Barrier Implosion for an AoE hold, and bring it down to a T8 power. I would also probably put Compression Field as the new T9 and rework it into a pet that functions much like Gravity Control's Singularity.

 

I think with those changes today have a pretty solid Control set.

 

Thanks for the name suggestions! I ended up settling on 2136775348_T1ExplosiveShield.png.a70aa57b7e83c2c059a96b337231dd0e.png T1: Explosive Sphere and 132314791_T2CuttingField.png.c92d27338c7e20e2284d4a0e0b4a9ec6.png T2: Razor Bubble for now. I think they're more evocative of the flavour I'm trying to describe about how the powers function in comparison.

 

While it's true that Barrier Control doesn't have an AoE Hold, it does have a power of equivalent utility in 1113680919_T7BarrierEmpowerment.png.0e16ab7b37b0c5fa549d8b7059c54b32.png T7: Barrier Empowerment with the same recharge time of 240s. This was quite intentional, as it's meant to serve a similar role: an emergency button whilst overwhelmed, buying time to survive further, just in the form of keeping your existing barriers alive as compared to directly holding down foes (also, AoE Holds are kind of meh, as @SeraphimKensai's post can attest to).

 

This idea of 'equivalent utility' can be carried over to 166592735_T9BarrierImplosion.png.78a6a8802a5757ab44dbae19197815e0.png T9: Barrier Implosion which takes the role of a pet, in that it supplies a good amount of damage with a bit of control on the side. Along with this, I set out to make Barrier Control petless (immobile force field summons notwithstanding), given that at present, only Mind Control exists to fill that niche. Not to mention, imploding force fields is just plain cool.

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On 10/15/2021 at 7:21 PM, oedipus_tex said:

I think if you have the skill level to write a post as in depth as this, you probably have the skill level to write the actual powerset. But, it's a lengthy process, and writing the set is only partof the equation. Unless you only care about having the set on your private server, you need to find a server to adopt them. So far I haven't found a server to house the couple of sets I've modded (on the other hand, haven't really advertised them either).

 

In general, not needing new particles cuts development time down by around 90%. At least that's my experience. What you're proposing here could probably mostly reuse existing particles, which means no creating and toying with FX and PART files. I don't mean to make it sound easy but since you seem to have a strong grasp of the game's mechanics, its certainly doable.

 

I attached a few sample DEF file from the public I24 code if you decide to bring your write ups closer to prototypes. DEFs are where most of the actual code definitions go in a powerset (but not graphics/animations, those are in the PFX files you'll see referenced in the DEF). Interestingly, if a power uses the exact same animation and powers as another power, you can keep the same PFX file and just change the DEF and get the same particles and animation but a new effect. Of course, its typical to copy and paste the PFX file with a new name, but that's where a lot of time savings occur.

 

Thank you, I'll think about it in that case! At the very least, it wouldn't harm to try and make something like this...and actually seeing the set being used in practice does admittedly sound very cool. To my knowledge, the power effects on display here are all things currently capable in-game, but I'm not too sure. Would definitely benefit from a dev checking through it and whatnot. And if it's a unique powerset that also doesn't require the creation of new assets, that sounds like an absolute win. Out of curiosity, what is the Generated by XLStoPowerDef.bat ver 57 annotation at the top of both files for? If there's a semi-automated tool to make these things out there, I imagine that'd make things a little bit easier.

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5 hours ago, Blackfeather said:

Out of curiosity, what is the Generated by XLStoPowerDef.bat ver 57 annotation at the top of both files for? If there's a semi-automated tool to make these things out there, I imagine that'd make things a little bit easier.

 

 

A lot of the older powersets were generated from an Excel export script. You can basically ignore that line though. You can edit the things in Notepad++ if you like, as long as you are mindful about spelling and formatting. They are just text files with fancy file extensions.

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9 hours ago, oedipus_tex said:

A lot of the older powersets were generated from an Excel export script. You can basically ignore that line though. You can edit the things in Notepad++ if you like, as long as you are mindful about spelling and formatting. They are just text files with fancy file extensions.

 

Alright, I imagine it shouldn't be too hard, hopefully at least. Out of curiosity, do you also have Gravity Control's powers file? I kind of want to see what they did for Singularity for the whole attract mechanism, or if there's a more general form of seeing the different kinds of things that the new attract tech can do.

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Also going to give @MTeague a wave - I know you've talked wanting more Control powersets without a pet in the past before, so this might be of interest to you! While Barrier Control does have 'pets' in its energy barrier summons, they're immobile constructs that are a core part of locking enemies down as opposed to being independent damage dealers. Would definitely be interested in hearing your thoughts on it, and whether it'd be something that'd appeal to your preferences!

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