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Props to MMs


Ukase
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I should say - Props to those that play MMs. I played one before - but I had only teamed with it to 25 or so, then PL'd the rest of the way. Didn't learn much that way. Came across a post from someone who'd used it in a challenge of sorts, going up through Praetoria, solo. 

Figured I'd give it a try. (Thugs/Time) It's not as easy as it looked from the outside, for sure. 

Hats off to any of you who leveled one up solo without being defeated once on your path to 50. So far, I've suffered defeat 3x and I'm only level 31. Tempted to delete it and start over, but I figure there are other combos to try. Time at this level is just about useless. I can't at this point imagine why folks are proclaiming it to be so awesome. A weak heal and a slow is all I'm seeing out of it so far. But, it's still early. 

Still, even more reason to give you guys props. Playing one of these is quite the chore. Now if I can just get all the pets to come in on a motorcycle, and give them a decent haircut. But, they are punks. What could I reasonably expect? 

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back on live i had my soldier/traps mm and would solo +1 x4 and pretty fun.  Remaking that toon is on the eternal to-do list.

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4 minutes ago, Omega Force said:

In addition to the heal, /Time gives you a hold and a significant defense/to hit buff, plus caps out with a recharge boost for Gang War.

That would be fine, if the gang actually did any kind of damage. They're like a bunch of toddlers trying to take down The Big Show. I'm just running at +1/3, and their only utility is a distraction. Pretty much a useless pet which I hope I won't have to use much. I mean - what's the point? Granted, all I have slotted in them is a couple of recharge IOs, but they do nothing but get foot stomped and die as soon as they spawn. Sometimes, they just get tossed about. I don't see much utility. What the set needs is dps, and thus far, it's not damage per second, but damage per moment, lol. 

I get that my experience with it is a learning one. And if I slot differently, I should expect a somewhat different result - and playstyle enters into it as well. I'm learning, but so far, other than the bruiser, none of the pets are worth spawning. They just seem to run interference. Perhaps I need to experiment things outside of bodyguard mode - but man, the hp of an MM is ridiculously low, and I don't see the logic there. But, just hit 32, I may learn more as I go and will gain a better appreciation. It's hard to transition from SS/Fire Brute to an MM. 

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Posted (edited)

Hello @Ukase

 

I might be able to offer some advice if I saw your build setup. But just so you know a MM will never match a Brutes damage 1 on 1. But it can exceed it in other ways. But if damage is what you value most in a build/at, then MMs might be frustrating. But for others the AT can be quite powerful. A LOT depends on your primary/secondary pairings, possibly more than other ATs. But /Time is a strong contender, and you will notice a bump once you get the ye old Power Boost + Farsight/Chrono.  But it helps knowing beforehand that MM's overall are very customizable in how they fight, but aren't concerned with damage as much as they are about controling the engagement in a variety of ways, such as buffing, debuffing, slowing, knockdown/knockbacks, so on.

 

With /Time in particular it shines in a few ways -

1. As mentioned its quite easy to softcap defenses for you and pets with Power Boost + Farsight, but Power Boost also affects the healing of your Chrono Shift. This does lock you into the /Mace pool if you wish to do this however.

2. You can stack the -SPD with your Time's Juncture with Distortion Field, slowing enemies considerably.

3. Slowed Response adds a bit of -RES that adds to damage taken.

 

As far as Damage itself, here are a few things that can help -

1. If you were unaware, you can "drag and drop" red inspirations onto your pets. Just click and drag it to their hp bar in the pet window, and if you are in range they will "use" it. This works for all inspirations except rez.

2. Some pets can slot chance to damage procs. This is great for a set like /Time where they have a Mule (Gangwar) for their pet IO sets. It may not sound like much but it I've found its noticeable. Some pets can slot more than one of these, and they also stack with your Interface Incarnate ability later.

3. A few things with Gangwar itself. Not only can you slot it with the pet Aura IO's, but you can also slot damage procs into it as well, making it hit a bit harder. But you can also slot the Chance to Knockdown unique there as well, which is particularly effective when paired with my next point.

4. With Thugs, it is strongly recommended to take Burnout. You can pop Gangwar, then Burnout, and immediately use another Gangwar. It is a very strong ability that is great against tough single targets.

5. Another option that does well with /Time, is taking Bonfire from Heat Mastery. Doing this will lock you out of Power Boost, but Bonfire is one of the best Proc/CC powers MMs have access too. You can load it up with damage procs and a knockdown, and pretty much locks things into flopping about in a patch of fire while they take damage. I still recommend Power Boost, but this is an option if you want more damage.

 

I am afraid without seeing your build this is all the advice I can offer. Overall /Time is very strong, but it's more of a Support/Defense secondary than offensive. MMs have a few options for more Damage/Offense such as /Storm, /Kinetics, or /Dark Miasma, but not very many. Hope it helps!

Edited by Neiska
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As primarily a Mastermind player I really don't feel I deserve props. I pretty much solo all the time I find them easy to play, safe and fun and all this without having to spend much Influence.  I feels like a very forgiving AT.  I have play other ATs, they feel like hard by comparison.  Then again, as my most played character is a Mercs/Force Field and that I also quite like Sentinels, clearly suggests I totally clueless and that I should learn how to play CoH for real one of these days.

 

For what it's worth Thugs/Time should be very strong. I have a Thugs/Cold, I don't even bother summoning the Tier 1s anymore as the character is strong enough as is and the Arsonist, good as his DPS might be, is just annoying.  Time however is a little bit of a late bloomer. Some of the best toys come late, especially if you want to combine them with Mace's Power Boost. 

 

 

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Time's Juncture is available at level 4. It's -tohit debuff will help a lot while leveling. Most of the IOs that increase pet survival and damage can be slotted at a relatively low level. If you got the influence/reward merits on another hero, transfer it over for a smoother ride.

 

Level 7: Slot Call to Arms +def
10: MoS, CotMM and Overwhelming KD proc
12: Edict of the Master +def
17: Achilles' and Shield Breaker procs (Enforcers)
22: Lady Grey proc (Enforcers) and Sovereign +res
26: Explosive Strike proc (Bruiser)
27: Expedient Reinforcements +res

 

SeraphimKensai recommended making Gang War perma. So at level 50, I did that and added Overwhelming Force KD proc to it. Consistently having 10-20 Punks knocking targets down is pretty satisfying.

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2 hours ago, Ukase said:

I'm just running at +1/3...

I found the problem.  You might have more success by leaving the difficulty alone until after you have your powers slotted out.

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2 hours ago, Omega Force said:

I found the problem.  You might have more success by leaving the difficulty alone until after you have your powers slotted out.


This...

Why ratchet up your difficulty before you can handle it? The AT's are designed for +0x1, anything above that is SUPPOSED to be challenging.

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Death is the best debuff.

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Ukase said:

So far, I've suffered defeat 3x and I'm only level 31. Tempted to delete it and start over

So wait, you've only died three times in that span are about ready to throw in the towel over that?!  😃

Edited by Clave Dark 5

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Posted (edited)

Thugs is basically cones based. So if you specialise some commands/macros to make the enforcers & arsonist attack a target you can target mid-back of a spawn and get excellent AoE. Keeping 3 henchies in BG mode works wonders for your survivability.

 

The slow bubble will work nicely with the Arsonist. 

 

Gang war is a decent power but it is a distraction / aggro absorber. I use it so my BG mode pets get going. It's also a good mule for pet sets & uniques. Overwheming kb2kd is a good shout there or in the Tier 1s (I go the tier 1s personally).

 

I'd agree with CD5, only 3 defeats by 31 is fine. You are technically a squishy, at least some of the time. Get a macro to throw all henchies into BG mode for whenever you see an ambush because they will target you. In non BG mode you are very squishy. With it on all henchmen and with some AoE heal spam you get very tanky.

 

And later on you'll hate Nemises and Malta. Be ready to drop diff against them. They do a lot of AoE and AoE is bodyguard kryptonite.

Edited by Carnifax
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2 hours ago, Clave Dark 5 said:

So wait, you've only died three times in that span are about ready to throw in the towel over that?!  😃

That seems like a lot to me. I see so many folks get defeated and they laugh it off. 
Just like in real life, defeat is a message. What does the message say? It says you made one or more mistakes. What were they? Win, or learn. If you're not learning after each defeat - as in - how to avoid the next defeat, you're not going to improve. My goal isn't simply to get an MM to 50, it's to learn to play one well. And, if you're dying routinely, are you really playing it well? I would say no. But that's just my definition. I wouldn't hold anyone else to my crazy standard. 

I completely understand this is a game, and many couldn't care one iota about improving in this game, I believe a winning attitude in real life will spill over into the game, and vice-versa. Not saying my thoughts are normal, it's just what I think. It's kind of like throwing a game in professional sports. Only the really bad teams will do it, because the good teams have a winning culture. It would be unthinkable to go down without a fight for a winning team. 

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1 hour ago, Carnifax said:

Thugs is basically cones based. So if you specialise some commands/macros to make the enforcers & arsonist attack a target you can target mid-back of a spawn and get excellent AoE. Keeping 3 henchies in BG mode works wonders for your survivability.

I have no idea how you would discern any of the attacks of the henchmen. I can barely find them in the throes of battle, let alone determine what attacks they're doing. I guess I should be doing more research. 
But, if I designate a target for those three - don't I lose the bodyguard mode? They have to be in defensive & follow, right? Or, would I just lose the hitpoints of those specific 3 out of the BG mode equation? 

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I've never really go into Thugs and I have a cadre of MMs. Put it this way, I have a Merc MM but, not a Thug. Thats how much I cannot get into them.

Its probable because of my middle class upbringing lol.

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1 hour ago, Ukase said:

I have no idea how you would discern any of the attacks of the henchmen. I can barely find them in the throes of battle, let alone determine what attacks they're doing. I guess I should be doing more research. 
But, if I designate a target for those three - don't I lose the bodyguard mode? They have to be in defensive & follow, right? Or, would I just lose the hitpoints of those specific 3 out of the BG mode equation? 

You'd have 3 guys in BG mode still, 3 doing targetted damage.

 

So any damage you take (after normal resists) gets split into 5ths, you take 2 fifths, 3 remaining BG pets take 1/5th each.

 

That's usually what I do, a bind which tells 3 pets "kill this" and 3 doing the rando bodyguard thing. Another bind / macro beside it which is "everyone back in BG mode" in case of emergency.

 

Remember once the attack target dies they'll revert to follow again anyway.

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26 minutes ago, Carnifax said:

You'd have 3 guys in BG mode still, 3 doing targetted damage.

 

So any damage you take (after normal resists) gets split into 5ths, you take 2 fifths, 3 remaining BG pets take 1/5th each.

 

That's usually what I do, a bind which tells 3 pets "kill this" and 3 doing the rando bodyguard thing. Another bind / macro beside it which is "everyone back in BG mode" in case of emergency.

 

Remember once the attack target dies they'll revert to follow again anyway.


A bind? That puts me in a bind. 
 

Using keybinds for this would be impractical at best, at least for me. There are only so many keys on the keyboard. How would anyone remember what each key was for? With the macro, there's at least some visual clue, presumably an abbreviation or acronym. 

I already have a bind for V,B,N, H, I, O, P, S, Z, T,M, N - which are the same for every character so I can keep them straight. Keybinds for all those pet options? I don't have enough keys. 
And I can't use the number pad because my right hand is on the mouse if it's not on the arrow keys moving the character about. 

 

As it stands now, I have the broad macros where I give the pets direction as a group. Telling one to go off and do X ...that opens up a lot of options, but requires way too many keys to have a different macro or keybind for each type of instruction. Surely this is the way of madness. Why would anyone be willing to entertain this level of control over a mindless henchman? More to the point, is it necessary? Or just optimal? I'd prefer to be optimal. No sense doing something half-assed. But, with the way I move a character, (arrow keys), I may be stuck in at a notch just above mediocrity. 

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This is what I do:

image.thumb.png.3e912e70c746d018a5e6e1d0e1b94317.png

 

If you look at my power bars numbered 3 and 6, you'll see the icons for different MM controls.  I drag and drop them from the MM pet windows and can then edit them, if I want.  So I generally run in BG mode until I get to a group, use an attack or debuff, and after taking the alpha I direct them to attack particular targets.  The focused fire makes them go down quicker and if I feel threatened I can go back into BG mode.

 

I also enable team inspirations and disable small inspirations once my build is close to complete.  It's a lot easier for me to use a team one before engaging or even during battle than feeding them to individual pets.

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2 hours ago, Ukase said:


A bind? That puts me in a bind. 
 

Using keybinds for this would be impractical at best, at least for me. There are only so many keys on the keyboard. How would anyone remember what each key was for? With the macro, there's at least some visual clue, presumably an abbreviation or acronym. 

I already have a bind for V,B,N, H, I, O, P, S, Z, T,M, N - which are the same for every character so I can keep them straight. Keybinds for all those pet options? I don't have enough keys. 
And I can't use the number pad because my right hand is on the mouse if it's not on the arrow keys moving the character about. 

 

As it stands now, I have the broad macros where I give the pets direction as a group. Telling one to go off and do X ...that opens up a lot of options, but requires way too many keys to have a different macro or keybind for each type of instruction. Surely this is the way of madness. Why would anyone be willing to entertain this level of control over a mindless henchman? More to the point, is it necessary? Or just optimal? I'd prefer to be optimal. No sense doing something half-assed. But, with the way I move a character, (arrow keys), I may be stuck in at a notch just above mediocrity. 

 

 

In case you haven't really paid much attention to the following thread, it's a bunch of key binds that are already set up for you, and I think quite a few people use them.  For me, I took it and modified to make it a bit simpler (for me at least).  With 7 keys, I can select either a single tier of pets (or all pets) and do a go to, set to bodyguard mode, or attack.  

I use Z to select Tier 1, X to select Tier 2, C to select Tier 3, or ` (tilde) to select all pets.

 

Then, I use my two mouse buttons to either send the group to a location or set the group to defensive/follow.  Lastly, I use the 1 key for the group to Attack/Aggressive.

 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Ukase said:

I have no idea how you would discern any of the attacks of the henchmen. I can barely find them in the throes of battle, let alone determine what attacks they're doing. I guess I should be doing more research. 
But, if I designate a target for those three - don't I lose the bodyguard mode? They have to be in defensive & follow, right? Or, would I just lose the hitpoints of those specific 3 out of the BG mode equation? 

I think we determined a while back that BG mode is any command so long as you are in defensive stance. Meaning, Defensive Follow, Defensive Stay, and Defensive Attack My Target should all be considered BG mode.

 

Edit: Also, I can't recommend Sandolphan's numpad binds enough for MM's (or some variation of them). I can't play MM's without them, they make pet control so much easier, and you can control each individual tier of henchmen if needed.

Edited by TygerDarkstorm

Global: @Valnara1; Formerly @TigerGoddess on Live

I primarily play on Everlasting, but you may occasionally find me on Indom. 🙂

Notable Characters: Apocolyptica - Demons/Storm MM; Human Mosquito - Water/Sonic Corruptor; Elfvira - Human-Form WS; Environmentabot - Bots/Nature MM; Illiana the Shroud - Fire/Dark Controller; Kincatic - Beast/Kin MM

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I will never use keybinds for this. It would make me have to rewrite binds for other powers and actions - and then I'd have to remember which binds did what. Binds, unless they are the same for every character you have, would render me incapable of doing anything. 

Again - when you switch from an MM to another alt - and play that for a stretch, and then re-visit your MM - how would you remember which key did what? Study a keybinds text file? Does that sound like something someone should have to do before playing a character? That just sounds pretty crazy to me. I ain't gonna do it. Props to those of you who can actually remember which key does what without having to review a text file. 

I'll use macros, thanks. I can at least right click on those if the label doesn't remind me. 

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Level 31 is hardly the time to throw in the towel. The 2nd upgrade is transformative for all the primaries, certainly for Thugs.  

 

I play a lot of MMs and frankly, Thugs/Time is easy mode, one of my best MMs, one of my most powerful characters period.  Like anything it takes a build to ratchet up the difficulty.  With MM def and res uniques, Enforcer Maneuvers and Farsight and the so called "weak heal" I don't do a lot of resummoning.

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I play a lot of solo MM. Have 50 Thugs/Emp, 50 Merc/Poison, 50 Beast/Nature, and 50 Bots/Elec. Recently started a Ninja/Time to play on Indom Red side. I don't use keybinds either. Occasional defeats are to be expected. Don't give up.

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27 minutes ago, Ukase said:

I will never use keybinds for this. It would make me have to rewrite binds for other powers and actions - and then I'd have to remember which binds did what. Binds, unless they are the same for every character you have, would render me incapable of doing anything. 

Again - when you switch from an MM to another alt - and play that for a stretch, and then re-visit your MM - how would you remember which key did what? Study a keybinds text file? Does that sound like something someone should have to do before playing a character? That just sounds pretty crazy to me. I ain't gonna do it. Props to those of you who can actually remember which key does what without having to review a text file. 

I'll use macros, thanks. I can at least right click on those if the label doesn't remind me. 

I only use the numpad binds for my MM's, so I never have to worry about that. Since MM's are one of my post played AT's, I don't have an issue remembering what my binds are and what they do. I mean, you do whatever works for you, but it's not rocket science to remember how my pet commands are mapped.

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I primarily play on Everlasting, but you may occasionally find me on Indom. 🙂

Notable Characters: Apocolyptica - Demons/Storm MM; Human Mosquito - Water/Sonic Corruptor; Elfvira - Human-Form WS; Environmentabot - Bots/Nature MM; Illiana the Shroud - Fire/Dark Controller; Kincatic - Beast/Kin MM

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For controlling my MM's I only use the keys available that you can drag down from the pet command window.  I then edit those keys though to do what I want, not leave them to the default.   So basically I make custom macros from the MM macros the game already gives you.  Same as Flea does it sounds like.

 

I do use binds to actually summon and upgrade the pets (using powexeclocation) so that I can quickly get all the pets out or quickly resummon at the quick press of a few keys.  For me that is a quick easy numpad 1, 2, and 3 for the summons, and numpad 4 and 5 for the upgrades.  Not hard to remember.  

 

I can definitely see the issue coming from a strong brute if that was the recent comparison.  I consider MM's a support AT (their secondary is support).  More fair to compare them to trying to solo a defender/corruptor/controller who also have support as their primary/secondary.  Using those AT's as the comparison, they solo very well. 

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