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Now that ASF went live, what do you think of it?


Albion
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I've played it most of the week ,and honestly I'm not a fan.  If it wasn't for trying to get the final badge I would stop playing it all together.   The rays aren't accurate and half
the time the teammates that are getting hit ... are getting hit from a previous beam that been off the screen already.  It's buggy and it's not fun enough for me to want to keep playing it.   

I think it's a bit long and a tad bit of an overkill on AV's.  I'm also not a fan of the increased taunts and confuse I've seen from the last update.  The new power sets feel over powered and some of the old feel underwhelming now.   Just not feeling it.  

Edited by incantation
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Threw ourselves at a Duo Relentless ASF again, with a Tank and /Rad this time.   Still not enough.   To-hit issues, and/or not enough -regen.

 

I'm not sure if it's a to-hit check on Lingering Radiation.  It's been so long since I had to worry about to-hit checks I can't remember if the -regen is auto-hit or not.   Or if one /Rad simply isn't enough to completely shutdown regen.  And with no-temps, I can't even use a power analyzer to check the AV.

 

Maybe a pair of Illusion/Rad with more traditional builds.  (Mine is heavily armored, and can't afford to swap incarnates around and lose any recharge at all).

Or Maybe a Trio.  I'd place good bets on a Trio pulling it off, and expect sooner or later we'll see just that, if not myself, then someone else.

 

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AE 801 (link) is a variety of missions for fun and challenge, and is designed for a team of 5+ Incarnates.  Just search '801' in AE. 

801 Difficulty Varies: 801.0 Easy, ..., 801.2 Standard, ..., 801.5 Hard, ..., 801.8 Extreme, ..., 801.A Epic, ... 801.F Death.

Angel Hornet (link)   -   Solo Vicious ASF (link)

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On 12/5/2021 at 3:49 PM, The_Warpact said:

@Zhym

 

When I was flying around Cap yesterday I didn't see anyone standing up there. But, there were plenty of LFG Winter Event calls going out and Pocket D was loaded.

So I'm thinking WE has everyone's attention.

I managed to join a PUG badge run last night, so the Winter Event may indeed have been partly responsible for the lower ASF activity last week. 

 

BTW, this particular PUG badge run went amazingly well.  I forget the exact composition, but IIRC it had a tank, a controller, and at least four blasters.  On Malicious, it took a little under an hour (including the optional AVs) and we burned through pretty much everything.  Still plenty of deaths, of course, but not to the extent that it was frustrating.  Once you know the SF's tricks, a good team shouldn't have any problem getting the badges.

 

I still want a Tourist/Squishy-Solo Mode, though, so I can click on all the things without slowing the team down (because there are so many things to click on). 

Edited by Zhym
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1 hour ago, Linea said:

I'm not sure if it's a to-hit check on Lingering Radiation.  It's been so long since I had to worry about to-hit checks I can't remember if the -regen is auto-hit or not.   Or if one /Rad simply isn't enough to completely shutdown regen.  And with no-temps, I can't even use a power analyzer to check the AV.

 

It's a click attack and not a toggle, so, like most such powers, it has a regular toHit check for all effects.

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So ... 100 + 2 - 30 ... ~= 72% ... that would do it.

For some reason LR wouldn't report in the combat monitor.  It's probably in the logs, but I never think to pull the logs.

 

I would love a ... Solo-Mode switch ... for all TFs, now that we have new tech.  Probably exclusive of the Master Switch.  No Solo-Mode Masters.  Something along the lines of:

  • AVs downgraded to EBs
  • Emps downgraded to Astrals
  • Astrals downgraded to Threads
  • RMs divided by 10, min 1.

 

Edited by Linea
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AE 801 (link) is a variety of missions for fun and challenge, and is designed for a team of 5+ Incarnates.  Just search '801' in AE. 

801 Difficulty Varies: 801.0 Easy, ..., 801.2 Standard, ..., 801.5 Hard, ..., 801.8 Extreme, ..., 801.A Epic, ... 801.F Death.

Angel Hornet (link)   -   Solo Vicious ASF (link)

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On 12/5/2021 at 10:41 AM, Zhym said:

Is anyone seeing PUGs for this since the initial flurry of activity last week?  I was hoping to glom onto a group doing badge runs, but the only call I’ve seen so far was a group doing a Vicious run (I think) looking for a particular AT.

 

That may be an issue with a SF mode that requires strategy and a balanced team: people might be less willing to run the SF with PUGs.  Whatever problems folks have with  TFs and SFs that can be burned down by whatever few randos show up, they do have the advantage of letting people form PUGs quickly and accept whoever asks to join, without too much worry that the whole thing will go off the rails (@Snarky’s experiences notwithstanding).  
 

Or maybe it’s just that everyone is doing Winter Event runs instead and ASF badge runs will resume after the new year.

 

I did a PUG late last night EST….like around 1130P.  Was an 8 person balanced team set on Relentless @+4.  I’m pretty sure a few of us, this was our first time.  Took just over 3 hours and we defeated all AV’s, did all objectives and (I think) got most of the badges.  Honestly, while I found it interesting story line, it’s a slog.  I don’t think I’d do it again other than with friends.  I was on Sent, T3 Alpha, Destiny and Lore only for the level shifts.  Died a -whole- bunch, although as the SF continued I learned how to avoid most deaths.  Some are just insta-ganked depending on what’s going on and who kills what that’s near you.

 

Not having inspirations really hurts.  I don’t realize how how much I actually use skittles until you can’t access them.

 

Fun but took far longer than I was prepared for it.  Nonetheless, stuck with it, got the goodies.  Really generous rewards though.  I think I got well over 300 threads, 50-60 Astrals and I don’t know how many Emps out of the deal.  Vet leveled twice also.

Edited by Crysis
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I just did my first run of the new strike force last night. Reading about it I was thinking I was going to need a super survivable character to run it. So I brought my shield/ma tanker.

 

I think we ran it on malicious and I neglected to look at the notoriety. But bosses were yellow or orange so it can’t have been +4. So it was a low difficulty run. The person leading the strike force was very experienced with it and had good explanations and strategies. 
 

So low difficulty settings + experienced leader + uber tanker and it turned out to be a breeze. 
 

That said, I’m interested in seeing how a full kill all AV run at max difficulty would go. Once I experience that I feel like I will be able to make a better judgment on the strike force. 

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I am seeing more Mo badge runs lately, and for those pondering, they are absolutely doable by mostly anyone, as long as there is clear instructions from lead and proper understanding and compliance from the rest of the team. Not giving spoilers but there is a particularly tricky one to get, but is not more trickier than dealing with Director 11 without getting hit, properly putting out the underground bombs, or avoiding the green on Keyes.

Σαυτὸν ἀρίθμησον πρότερον καὶ γνῶθι σεαυτόν,

      καὶ τότ᾽ ἀριθμήσεις γαῖαν ἀπειρεσίην.

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10 hours ago, Saikochoro said:

I just did my first run of the new strike force last night. Reading about it I was thinking I was going to need a super survivable character to run it. So I brought my shield/ma tanker.

 

I think we ran it on malicious and I neglected to look at the notoriety. But bosses were yellow or orange so it can’t have been +4. So it was a low difficulty run. The person leading the strike force was very experienced with it and had good explanations and strategies. 
 

So low difficulty settings + experienced leader + uber tanker and it turned out to be a breeze. 
 

That said, I’m interested in seeing how a full kill all AV run at max difficulty would go. Once I experience that I feel like I will be able to make a better judgment on the strike force. 

 

Max settings made me overhaul my tank a good deal, and tweak my dom a tad.  Everything has been so easy up to now I could get away with having fly as my mode of travel.  

 

This made me get serious with my tank which ended up getting me to like her even more.   Out with fly and laser beam eyes and in with Unleash Potential, One With the Shield, Unrelenting, Melee Hybrid and I went and got my defense accolades.  This is the kind of thing it takes to survive through Relentless and be able to drag your team through.  

 

Overall Vicious is the most optimal setting it seems.  A great workout on the build you optimize for Relentless runs without the hassle of having to make a specific sort of team with good rewards in astral and emp merits. 

 

Once you et a few more runs to familiarize yourself with this do give Relentless runs a try, it'll make you cross examine any toon you look to run through that gauntlet.  

Edited by Mezmera
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On 12/11/2021 at 3:14 PM, Crysis said:

I think I got well over 300 threads, 50-60 Astrals and I don’t know how many Emps out of the deal.

50 astrals is what, 100 merits? 2 per? Plus the 40 +(+40 for wtf (if it still is)) + the dsync or merit bonus. Its pretty looty, especially if you run with a tuned team that can run it sub 1:30

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I joined one for the first time earlier today and it was a lot of fun.  My only notable beef (but it's a big one) is "Why is this a Strike Force?".  Seriously, it's so heavy on story and dialogue and when you've got seven teammates rushing forward, to borrow a phrase, ain't nobody got time for that.  But soloing it is also infeasible because as a SF, it's filled to the brim with AVs (and worse!).  My villain's inevitable kingdom for an "SSA" version or the like that lets me actually enjoy all the story, the dialogue, and the Becky.

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21 hours ago, Lazarillo said:

I joined one for the first time earlier today and it was a lot of fun.  My only notable beef (but it's a big one) is "Why is this a Strike Force?".  Seriously, it's so heavy on story and dialogue and when you've got seven teammates rushing forward, to borrow a phrase, ain't nobody got time for that.  But soloing it is also infeasible because as a SF, it's filled to the brim with AVs (and worse!).  My villain's inevitable kingdom for an "SSA" version or the like that lets me actually enjoy all the story, the dialogue, and the Becky.

That is more to blame on peoples mindset, the ideal would have been people taking their time to strategize and polish their team work, while appreciating the surroundings, but there is some even rushing Relentless by now, there are thankfully some more eased up ones where people tries to enjoy the story instead of wanting to beat everything asap and get out.

Σαυτὸν ἀρίθμησον πρότερον καὶ γνῶθι σεαυτόν,

      καὶ τότ᾽ ἀριθμήσεις γαῖαν ἀπειρεσίην.

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21 hours ago, Lazarillo said:

I joined one for the first time earlier today and it was a lot of fun.  My only notable beef (but it's a big one) is "Why is this a Strike Force?".  Seriously, it's so heavy on story and dialogue and when you've got seven teammates rushing forward, to borrow a phrase, ain't nobody got time for that.  But soloing it is also infeasible because as a SF, it's filled to the brim with AVs (and worse!).  My villain's inevitable kingdom for an "SSA" version or the like that lets me actually enjoy all the story, the dialogue, and the Becky.

 

This is just one thing but accurately sums up how I feel regardless. It hit me like a truck first time I did, and every following time too, to the point I've resolved to not run it anymore. This is not a SF. I can't take it at such a basic level, my brain just shorts out in disbelief midway through then I ruin the mood for rest of team when I manage to wake up.

 

There's a toooooon of awesome things but majority are completely wasted in more than one way under this form and arrangement - so all the good bits just feel even more frustrating.

 

With bit more polish this could practically be a SF + a small SSA + 2 side arcs - instead of a WST DSO Farm...

 

Could go to great lengths spamming about individual subjects within, some in a more targeted and constructive fashion, but overall it's probably going to be just as painful to read than to write.

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Solo Vicious RippleSurge is Down.  ...  Finally.  That was a tough fight.

About 20-25m to clear 1/3 to 1/2 of the map to give me room to work. About 20-25m to clear the bug issues. Then about 20-25m to take down RippleSurge himself. Can't say exactly, but I did use 2 lore, and pretty sure I didn't get to the 3rd lore, but it was recharging.

 

Primary Issues:

  • The Bug -  I suggest not trying to solo it till this is fixed.
  • Confusion Protection hole in my armor.  This one will destroy my dps and likely allow Ripple to Heal on Ruthless and above.
  • A tiny defense gap when not T9ed.  I can't T9, because that 30s crash could be critical and let Ripple Heal, and there' no way he's going down in less than 7m (Max fight duration without a critical crash.  I can cover one crash, not two).  That gap will get exploited Ruthlessly on Ruthless and above.

I do not expect to get past the last pool of the last mission, but I'm gonna try.  I should be able to reach the last pool, just probably not get past it.

Edited by Linea
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AE 801 (link) is a variety of missions for fun and challenge, and is designed for a team of 5+ Incarnates.  Just search '801' in AE. 

801 Difficulty Varies: 801.0 Easy, ..., 801.2 Standard, ..., 801.5 Hard, ..., 801.8 Extreme, ..., 801.A Epic, ... 801.F Death.

Angel Hornet (link)   -   Solo Vicious ASF (link)

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5 hours ago, Albion said:

That is more to blame on peoples mindset, the ideal would have been people taking their time to strategize and polish their team work, while appreciating the surroundings, but there is some even rushing Relentless by now, there are thankfully some more eased up ones where people tries to enjoy the story instead of wanting to beat everything asap and get out.

I don't think all the blame here can be assigned in a "kids these days!" sort of way.  Everyone has a different reading pace, things like that, and teams can't necessarily compensate for that.  Doubly so when some of the content like Becky or Psicurse in the ASF, speficially, only converse until the first person to talk to them is done.  Plus, even if teams were more tactically-minded as you described, that's still time that those players are going to be spending on working together, not going off on their own to read story stuff.

 

A lot of it is in how the story is told, I think, too. ASF is extremely wordy and info-dumpy, and filled to the brim with fairly complex stuff showing up even in captions or talk balloons that can disappear quickly or get hidden under various system text (or even under the next round of captions/NPC chatter!).  It's very "tell" over "show", for lack of a better way of putting it.  That's not inherently a bad thing in a game like this, but it doesn't fit the teaming experience.  Compare it to the old ITF, for example, where the story is much simpler and told through visuals and through actions.  You learn about the Nictus involvement through the mountain of ambushes in the first mission, and the 5th Column causing trouble when you turn that corner for the first time and get that maiden-run-magical "wait, what!?" when you see the mech.  Of course, the reasoning behind the story is also much more straightforward.  It can afford, more or less, to tell the story that way, because the inherent issue of "Cimerorans good, traitors bad" is pretty much the whole driving force.

 

The ASF by comparison involves the Goldbrickers doing something involving alternate dimensions but what they're doing, what you're doing, and why, gets buried deep within text blocks that some team members won't even have access to when playing with others.

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I have now completed this a number of times with groups of folks that I would consider "better than average" and "average". 

My experience with it was specifically for Master. I see no reason to do it for any other purpose, other than perhaps to farm for the defeat badges within. 

The last mission is ...interesting...at least I think it's the last mission. It's rather like 3 small missions. You zone in and Becky's there (if you bothered to do the dialogue) and the building seems to be sideways. Very interesting look. Then we go through a blue portal - very small, tiny blue portal that if others didn't see it, I never would. It should be about 3 to 5x bigger than it is. We go through, and find some objects and then go through another portal, also very tiny...and I wouldn't see this one either, if I hadn't seen a teammate pop through it. 

It's strange - I use my map, and I see none of my teammates are on the map with me. They've gone through the portal, I haven't, and it's a bit off-setting. Yet, on my team list, we're all still on the same map, effectively. Anyway, I go through the portal, we beat up a couple more AVs in this odd Mother Mayhem mind-space like place, and eventually go through another door, to the last part. 

So, there are blue patches we have to avoid - if we're going for a badge. Avoid the blue stuff. Great. (yes, that's sarcasm) Fortunately, there's a different targeting mechanic..that I'm told is now currently glitched on occasion. Well, before shut down, patches hit that weren't perfect as well. 

It's a solid story. It's interesting that on different difficulty levels, that npcs have different abilities to account for. I have died more from Brickernauts exploding than from any other NPC in the game, ever. I really wish the graphics for this were more visible on my system. Damned hard for me to see them. If I'm not on Discord, they'll get me 4 out of 5 times because I don't see them. 

The best part is the first mission though. The tired scientist that's sleeping next to the glowing object that we have to take Becky to...after that, it's all downhill for enjoyment. 

 

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2 hours ago, Lazarillo said:

A lot of it is in how the story is told, I think, too. *snip*

 

* Crey PP intrigue goes into too much detail for the scope of the SF

* Having chained dialogue showstoppers like for Ripplesurge, or to a lesser extent straight when entering first mish with Becky, ruins pacing for 7/8 players

* There's too much random involvement for seemingly no reason, eg. random Shivans / Luddites

 

All of this heavily scatters player focus, for things that should probably just not be in a SF and would make great arc content on their own. To me, this isn't the worst part though. It's the Golden Roller fight. I find each part absolutely amazing, but put together it's by far the most painful experience i've been through in the game.

 

In particular the Portal Corp "side-arc". The setting it paints is, let me just put it that way, ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. Landing in apocalypse setting in front of Vanguard, the setup, music, the meeting with Psy, this feeling of urgency as you cut through destroyed Portal Corp, alarms screaming... The way it's all made makes for what I wouldn't be afraid to call the BEST FINALE ARC mission I've played in the game ever. It feels far more involving than Mot's bullshit and such which is so long strung: you're thrown and involved at high speed into the intrigue and it's clear and coherent. You have a dilemma, a sketchy goal, and are drawn into it. You need to see this to the end. And Hero 1 of all people, for such an incredible end of the world apocalypse finale!

 

And that's basically the whole problem: it's not a finale. It's a random 4-missions arc single side boss phase in what's not even the end of a single mission of a single SF. It's not just a waste of potential of a whole SSA, it also absolutely DESTROYS the SF setting. I really meant it earlier - when exiting it back to the warehouse and Golden Roller fight, regardless of success/not in the Portal Corp thingy, my brain completely shorts out. I sit in disbelief for 5-15 minutes in the room trying to convince it that, no, the SF isn't over. Yeah it was just a side thing. No, there's still a story. Yeah, it matters.. probably.. i think. No, don't just say "gg, thanks for team" and Alt-F4. Come on. I know it's painful but please at least pretend ? Don't cry. For the team. Please.

 

And that's really the very reason I don't want to ever run it again.

 

Edit: Yes, people previously mentioned that a lot of these are not dead end because they're actually supposed to be primers to other stories coming in the future. But it's way too much scattering for a SF and makes it literally implode on its own. They don't belong here. Really. I'm a bit confused about the very idea of using a Team-built SF to prime main story arcs to begin with too...

 

Edited by Fira
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All in all, I think ASF hit all the right (and intended) spots, from my personal perspective, the design responds to some niches and metas that have been long stablished in the game, and may not be very healthy for it in the long run, that is bound to ruffle some feathers. It also introduces some very interesting settings and mechanics that will be now available for future endeavors.

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Σαυτὸν ἀρίθμησον πρότερον καὶ γνῶθι σεαυτόν,

      καὶ τότ᾽ ἀριθμήσεις γαῖαν ἀπειρεσίην.

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32 minutes ago, Albion said:

the design responds to some niches and metas that have been long stablished in the game, and may not be very healthy for it in the long run, that is bound to ruffle some feathers.

 

I'm curious about this bit! Not trying to draw out a disagreement here, just wondering if you'll say more about what you think. 

 

Here, working on mission 2 difficulty level 2. I guess Malicious? I'm finding it easier than expected -- which is to say, not easy at all, but achievable without deaths so far. I'm not sure that's going to remain true through some of the harder enemies, but so far so good.

 

Regarding the amount of plot, I'm actually completely OK with it. It seems to me, after all, that every mission is such that only the mission leader gets the full benefit of the mission text, and only the simplest missions can fully convey their plot outside of mission text. I'd rather have an interesting and developed mission text which one has to read at leisure, accepting that this will demand soloing or an accommodating team, than sparse plot information conveyable through dialogue bubbles to everyone on the team, and I don't think that's a false dichotomy. I think it's just an artifact of the way the game conveys information. We're all expert at skipping text blocks when we want to punch things, after all.

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3 minutes ago, Bodhivajra said:

I'm curious about this bit! Not trying to draw out a disagreement here, just wondering if you'll say more about what you think. 

It has been long discussed and yes usually becomes a flamefest :P, but to make it short: a group of blasters rolling over a tf in ten minutes is not the ideal way of playing. That said, it is ONE of the ways of playing and everyone plays as they have fun, no one can tell others how to play, but (and precisely because of that) when a certain way becomes kind of mandatory in practice and some AT's and players of a different persuasion don't enjoy content or their own builds much because of that, well, something gets added to counterbalance, can't make everyone happy but can make sure there is different things to do and to like for everyone.

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Σαυτὸν ἀρίθμησον πρότερον καὶ γνῶθι σεαυτόν,

      καὶ τότ᾽ ἀριθμήσεις γαῖαν ἀπειρεσίην.

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2 minutes ago, Albion said:

to make it short: 

Ohh, I get it. I misunderstood the original sentence I quoted! I thought you were saying that some aspect of the Aeon design might not be healthy for the game in the long run; you were suggesting that the current meta of steamrolling TFs might not be healthy. Yes, agreed. I absolutely like that the Aeon has me reexamining every one of my buffer characters and checking the name over every mob's head to identify what needs to be punched first. 

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3 minutes ago, Bodhivajra said:

Ohh, I get it. I misunderstood the original sentence I quoted! I thought you were saying that some aspect of the Aeon design might not be healthy for the game in the long run; you were suggesting that the current meta of steamrolling TFs might not be healthy. Yes, agreed. I absolutely like that the Aeon has me reexamining every one of my buffer characters and checking the name over every mob's head to identify what needs to be punched first. 

The only thing bad for health in ASF is the damn brickernauts, even when I am aware and keeping an eye out for them, one second of distraction and they get me...

Σαυτὸν ἀρίθμησον πρότερον καὶ γνῶθι σεαυτόν,

      καὶ τότ᾽ ἀριθμήσεις γαῖαν ἀπειρεσίην.

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Solo Hardmode 2-Star Vicious ASF  (Difficulty 3 of 5) Complete!

That was not at all easy. 

 

It all went south on the last pool of the last mission. Anything that could have gone wrong, went wrong.  But I managed to pull it out of the ditch in the end, but only barely.  Took about an hour to clear my way to Midas, and Midas himself took about 30m.   However, in-between there I had a total failure and let him regen to full health.  I also had several minor finger fumbles and failures.  All this extended the time needed exponentially.  90m should be doable, 120m definitely.  I spent closer to 3h, and it was entirely my own fault.

 

I typically play about one mission a day, and you can assume 60-90m per mission (Vicious).   However, I had to redo at least 3.  1 Due to connection issues, and 2 due to my own failure and/or lack of time available.   So while It should be doable in well less than 10h, I spent 16+ over about a week of real-time.  This one is a new record for Longest Solo TF for me.

 

No chance I'll be able to get past RippleSurge on Ruthless (Difficulty 4), and I've so far not been able to Duo Past the first AV on Relentless (Difficulty 5) at all.

 

Also, given I soloed it on Vicious, I'm downgrading it's difficulty rating by one tier.  For Vicious to be rated 7, I would have needed to fail it and not get past the first few missions.

 

Spoiler

414915277_AngelHornet-SoloViciousASF.thumb.jpg.55b98dd31afde8557e4a01eed5ad16e0.jpg

 

Edited by Linea
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AE 801 (link) is a variety of missions for fun and challenge, and is designed for a team of 5+ Incarnates.  Just search '801' in AE. 

801 Difficulty Varies: 801.0 Easy, ..., 801.2 Standard, ..., 801.5 Hard, ..., 801.8 Extreme, ..., 801.A Epic, ... 801.F Death.

Angel Hornet (link)   -   Solo Vicious ASF (link)

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