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How would you rank the Secondaries?


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What rating criteria?  Damage?  Mitigation?  Combos?  Fun?



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1 hour ago, PLVRIZR said:

What rating criteria?  Damage?  Mitigation?  Combos?  Fun?



You're not being asked to rank them. You're being asked how you'd rank them.


I would rank them in descending order of number of attacks able of being slotted with Knockback enhancements.

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Fiery Melee! Just burn everything to the ground (and put Avalanche's KD proc in FSC) ! Well... kind of, there's a lot to unpack with this question. I started to write a response then realized I was reviewing all the pros and cons of each set (something that I don't have time for atm). That said, this does sound like a good community participation project/response. But while that brews, is there any type of play style you enjoy over another?





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On 3/23/2022 at 6:33 PM, ivioin said:

Just curious, as an inexperienced tanker that wants to make one. For tankers... How would you guys rank the secondaries? or does the secondary primarily depend on your primary? Thanks...


I haven't tried that many Tanker secondaries on Homecoming... primarily because if I am playing Melee I feel like I can (eventually) 'level up' a Scrapper or Stalker (I don't like Fury as a mechanic, YMMV) to satisfy my solo urges and be plenty tough for team play... but... I like the faster-cycling melee sets, both for aesthetics and punch-voke. I was OK with Energy Melee prior to the most recent HC upgrade (although I preferred the original flavor) but the HC update is an improvement. I felt that War Mace was too slow for me, so I rerolled that character as a Scrapper instead... it didn't improve the flow but it did improve the DPS. War Mace really only became tolerable for me after I had significant Global Recharge. I like Street Justice on Scrappers and Stalkers, I assume I'd like it on Tankers. Super Strength never appealed to me, nor have any of the secondaries with Aurae. Dark has always looked like it would be fun to explore.

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I'd rank them based on the following criteria:


  1. What amount of team mitigation is baked into the powerset, whether tohitdebuffs, knockdowns, stuns, end drain, slows, etc. All tankers should be able to get in the mix and control the fight, tankers that can mitigate more incoming damage to their teammates get a gold star.
  2. Did the powerset benefit from the AoE/cone changes for tankers, does that change help set them apart from the powerset on any other AT.
  3. Aside of team mitigation, what does the secondary effect of the powers do, does it soften up hard targets, quickly kill trash mobs, or make things easier to hit, or have some unique power interaction?
  4. What's the damage type? How does that compare to enemy resistance levels?
  5. What's the breakdown of single target, cone, or aoe attacks? What's available by certain benchmarks: lvl 15, 20, 30?
  6. Does the set design allow for a decent assortment of procs? What is the PPM for those powers?
  7. Are there any combo situations I need to be aware of, or what's my ideal rotation with this set for an av, boss, swarm of minions. What's the end cost benefit analysis of the powers?
  8. Lastly, does the powerset feel fun? Are the attacks satisfying? Do the animations take a hundred years to go off? 


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I feel like a lot of it is conditional.


Lower desired at least in terms of solo play. Anything Lethal damage. Tanks have lower damage. Add in being highly resisted and no matter how safe you are, it gets boring trying to solo. Additionally, I don't see the reason for picking DB over Claws, but at least when it comes to non-Scrapper situations, DB looks better since Spin has a longer recharge. Yes, I see the advantage to DB if theme is the issue, but from a performance stand point, Claws all the way.


Things which have longer cast times and lower DPA. Staff tends to stick out in this regard. Staff does have bonuses and maybe even a bit too good coming from the combo system. A better balance of damage versus utility would be nice. Tanks don't need +13% Res coming from an attack which has anemic DPA. More damage and maybe +3% Def and +6% Res instead. Also adding in Kin Melee. Rad has some longer ST cast times, but it makes up for it via AoE in IG. TW is a quirky set in that cast can and will be long or they can be really fast.


Playstyle. Some of us(waves) like faster playing sets. This does not mean slower sets are bad. Some might prefer the slower hitting like a truck sets. I tend to skip them. Battle Axe, War Mace, Broad Sword, and Stone Melee fall in place here. On the flip side, something like Kat simply flies due to low animation times. Claws is still good here even if not Scrapper fast. StJ is also rather quick. Its AoEs are on the smaller side though although faster recharging.


Sets which are heavy one way or another in terms of ST or AoE damage. Note, it is easier to add in AoE than it is ST damage. MA is ST heavy, but at least you get +Def from an attack and the AoE can recharge fast enough. EM is also ST heavy, but it at least has a cone + PBAoE. They just aren't great. SS is ST heavy, but it has the best AoE in the game.  Spines, Savage, and Elec are AoE heavy, but at least Savage comes closer to having a ST attack chain. If Hemo ever got fixed... Savage doesn't really have that much mitigation so the damage should be really good. 


Dark can be a cure all, or not really beneficial. Shield/dark and SR/dark are great. WP/dark less so.


Fire is an oddity as it should have the most damage with no mitigation and yet it doesn't do the most damage for ST or AoE.


Ice is one of if not the most defensive set, and it rarely resisted. DoT heavy and plays slow. Ideally you take an Epic attacks to smooth things out.


Some sets have combos in them and some people aren't fond of them as they can "force" certain attacks to be used. DB's best DPS actually ignores its own combo system.


Psionic has Insight which is random in triggering and forces a lockout once it wears off. Boggle can increase the chance of Insight, but that's less desirable to use on a team.


I don't have a favorite, but I might lean on Ice as a default for now. Ice Patch just neutralizes things.





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As many here have mentioned, these sort of rankings are very subjective, and will depend on primary synergies, as well as what you are really measuring against.


That being said, here is my very broad feeling on only the secondaries I have actually played on a Tanker:


Super great I love it:

  • War Mace - Single Target smashy slam slam, outstanding aoes. Just a great crunchy feel with plenty of mitigation.
  • Martial Arts - Smooth attack chains, super efficient aoe power that is better on a Tanker than other AT's, diversity in style (kicks vs chops!), outstanding defensive buffs.
  • Stone Melee - Smashy smash - then more smash. Similar to WM, I love the crunch. This one is weaker in aoe damage, but makes up for it in superior mitigation through chained knockdowns. 
  • Super Strength - A classic, and rage gives you a lot of slotting flexibility due to lower need for acc/tohit. I'm not a double stacker, but who can deny the love of Foot stomp and Haymaker in any situation?
  • Ice Melee - Great damage type, Ice Patch is a real gem if you need mitigation in your secondary, Essentially frozen foot stomp, an amazing melee hold damage power, and Frost is way better than you would expect. Hard to make a really great single target rotation, though good ST burst.


Fun and effective:

  • Claws - Claws is good as always. Not perfection as it is on Scrappers, but still a fast and efficient set with some added personality.
  • Savage Melee - Excellent aoe - smooth as butter. Very fun teleport power that is good in both ST and aoe situations.
  • Titan Weapons - Still strong after the "adjustment," though not my daily driver for sure. It is rather satisfying to get into the rhythm of a good momentum rotation and smack a mob around. 
  • Dark Melee - this is actually a great set, but I just like it more on a scrapper. Tanker Shadow Maul is beautiful though. Great to layer with a defense based armor set or those that lack a heal.

Good enough:

  • Battle Axe - it works, but lethal is pretty heavily resisted. Gets a bad rep but not actually bad. Similar to War Mace in many ways, but inferior damage type and no Clobber. 🙂 
  • Fiery Melee - It does slightly above average damage, and will get you there. No interesting effects to make up for the fact that it isn't damage king by a far shot.
  • Street Justice - It's actually pretty good by the numbers for ST at least. Very sorely lacking in aoe, and just doesn't have the right feel for me. The uppercut feels great though.
  • Electrical Melee - Not as good as you might hope for, but boy is Lightning Rod a blast! Otherwise pretty mediocre single target and aoe damage, though it has some decent mitigation built-in. I prefer this in a Stalker. I know many would find the low rating contentious on this one!


Actually sort of disappointing:

  • Spines - I know it's used for farming and by no means objectively bad, and it works great for some themes. Single target is abysmal, and the aoes are awkward to use or slow to animate.
  • I guess I haven't been disappointed by many?


If it's not listed, I haven't played it yet on a Tanker, so don't feel fair enough to judge. I think it's time for me to make a Rad Melee and maybe Staff!

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This is how I rank the secondaries

  1. Doesn't have weapon redraw 
  2. Does have weapon redraw

And also by:

  1. Has useful secondary effects (stun, knockdown, self-buffs, etc)
  2. Doesn't have useful secondary effects

And lastly but not leastly:

  1. Has cool sound effects
  2. Sound effects suck and make the set feel week or annoying to play
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