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You are about to do something hard and can only pick one defender...


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So, if you want to do something harder than usual (Mo-X, Hard Modes, 801...) and you could only pick one defender...what would you choose? 

 

Other than Elec/*, please ūüôā I think Elec could be the obvious choice, imo is a bit OP.

 

My top three would be Dark/*, Nature/*, Storm/*, probably in that order. 

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Elec is OP in teams but it's a busy old set so you spend half your time supporting yourself.

 

The support sets I've mostly played:

 

  • Kinetics - a team player that doesn't have much solo capacity. Like warshades, it loses steam when faced with one tough boss. Kinetics favours a very aggressive team and has the healing chops to carry reasonably well
  • Storm - as long as you can keep your recharge high and don't bottom out of endurance, you're pumping out a lot of damage and AoE soft control.
  • Dark - solos fine, quite safe, you get a smoky man to help with debuffing that occasionally throws you a heal. It's good it solos so well because you can out-aggro some tanks.
  • Rad - you can solo anything, given enough time. Radiation was the old skool "do anything hard" power set. If you thought Dark picked up a lot of aggro, Radiation is on another level.¬†
  • Traps - you can solo anything, provided you kite it to where you need it to be. A very powerful set, provided enemies don't move.

 

Edited by Gulbasaur
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I'm a big fan of my time/fire defender for when I think the SG is too melee heavy and I'm not in the mood to just add to the problem. Time provides massive mitigation and fire is... well, fire. And yea, this combo solos surprisingly well.

Change is often good but if you're losin the OG crowd, you're doin somethin wrong.

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44 minutes ago, Bill Z Bubba said:

I'm a big fan of my time/fire defender for when I think the SG is too melee heavy and I'm not in the mood to just add to the problem. Time provides massive mitigation and fire is... well, fire. And yea, this combo solos surprisingly well.

You can say that, I have one and it's a beast both solo and in groups. It's so powerful I get bored with her, that's why is not in my list. But truy, Time/* should be a contendent for the top spots

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     Common answer on Pinnacle would have been my Cold/Ice/Power Defender.   I also had a Sonic/Dark who was part of the strongest theme team my friends and I ran on Live (and quite possibly the strongest team of 5 I've played on bar none).  The 5 of us were crushing +4/×8 Arachnos in the early to mid 20's (on primarily SOs and DOs) in Faultline arcs.  Or a Dark/Rad, Kin/Psy or Emp/Dark.  Freedom was home to the majority of my Empaths so likely either Emp/Rad, Emp/Sonic, or one of several still leveling /Elec, /Ice or /Fire.

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For a tank-killer like 801, if the main tank's armor set is resistance based, I'd bring a Time defender. If the main tank's armor set is primarily defense based, I'd bring Nature or Electrical Affinity.

 

For a mission that's hard because the enemies refuse to die, like the first mission of the Katie Hannon TF, I'd bring a Rad defender.

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4 hours ago, Erhnam said:

So, if you want to do something harder than usual (Mo-X, Hard Modes, 801...) and you could only pick one defender...what would you choose? 

 

Other than Elec/*, please ūüôā I think Elec could be the obvious choice, imo is a bit OP.

 

My top three would be Dark/*, Nature/*, Storm/*, probably in that order. 


I am not going to give you theories.   I am not going to talk without having a ton of experience in this subject matter. 
From experience with all of the sets below, I will tell you the best for this very specific role, and this role only inside one of the toughest 801s or doing my own challenges in AE.  

The only thing that comes close to Electric Affinity for 801s, Master of Challenges, hard mode, no insps , no deaths... 
The only other set that can compete is 

NATURE AFFINITY, and I mean compete in specifically what it does.   I am not talking about radios, nor other regular content of the game, which is extremely easy and bores me.   For the toughest stuff in the game, Elec Affinity and Nature for this specific Role -- healer/buffer, keeping things alive and buffing. 

Next in line - Thermal.  

I have done hundreds of 801s, I am a hard mode afficionado, a real enthusiast for the hard content of the game.  
I recommend to anyone who has not tried these to do them and do lots of them. 
They will make you a much better player, increase your skills and sharpen your tactics. 

If you don't want ELec Affinity, GO NATURE !

This is regardless of the type of tank. 

The type of tank has no relevance in this discussion.  


Nature and Elec affinity are the two best supports for a defender to bring for an 801 or even my own challenges which are even harder than 801s. 

The TOP THREE are 

Elec Affinity
Nature 
Thermal 

Then below is EMP 
Then Pain. 
Dark Miasma
Powerboosted Force Bubbles 

Edited by Voltak
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     In some ways though this is not really the right question to ask because the ideal answer is highly dependent on what the team already has.  The best choice(s) depends on what the team is missing.  Time, for example, is potent as hell yes but utterly lacks +damage resistance.  So a team with a ton of +defense and minimal resistance is better served by a defender bringing more damage resistance.  It's why an 8-man team of all Empath's is virtually indestructible but is pretty much required to take down an AV through raw damage output as it totally lacks any debuffs to help (and why /sonic assault is such a popular secondary for Empathy).  It's why that 5-man team was so silly strong by the mid 20's with minimal if any IOs.  We were capping nearly everything and by higher levels would have been.  You name it that team likely had it.

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Agree with Voltak’s picks. The normal stuff doesn’t work the same in 801’s etc. I’ve been crushed in those on Time Defs. Can’t play the same old defense/recharge/damage meta in actual hard content. 

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1 hour ago, Doomguide2005 said:

     In some ways though this is not really the right question to ask because the ideal answer is highly dependent on what the team already has.  The best choice(s) depends on what the team is missing.  Time, for example, is potent as hell yes but utterly lacks +damage resistance.  So a team with a ton of +defense and minimal resistance is better served by a defender bringing more damage resistance.  It's why an 8-man team of all Empath's is virtually indestructible but is pretty much required to take down an AV through raw damage output as it totally lacks any debuffs to help (and why /sonic assault is such a popular secondary for Empathy).  It's why that 5-man team was so silly strong by the mid 20's with minimal if any IOs.  We were capping nearly everything and by higher levels would have been.  You name it that team likely had it.


Doom, 

At the highest of highest of AE challenges, which are by far the hardest content of the game, even tougher than AEON,  One well built and well played Elec Affinity and one well built and well played Nature, both defenders, and you have a team that's ready and will be extremely hard to kill and along with that, with many buffs, 3 of any of that combo, and you can turn on Netflix and so some other stuff too while you play... TOO easy. 

the highest levels of 801s  and my AE challenges include a strong array of debuffs.  
The absorbs and the immense healing along with the resists provided, and strong healing over time, make it very hard to kill. 
Thermal's resists plus healing combo is what makes a strong 3rd place. 

The only force field that matters in 801s at the highest is the Defender bubbles with PowerBoost, and clarion radial. 
That alone can help immensely to bring you to the HARD cap, not soft cap, but the hard cap of defenses if done right. 
That is leaving plenty of room for the defense debuff buffer but adding end drain protection which abound in those challenges. 

The kin is always welcome to max dmg and debuff the dmg of the enemies in an AoE basis. 

 

Edited by Voltak
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¬† ¬† ¬† And as I look through those 2 sets, ones I've yet to play (and definitely wish to), I can definitely see why you say what you say and agree.¬† They are both very total package.¬† Not just buffs and debuffs but a wide mix across virtually any such a team might need.¬† Nature Affinity:¬† Debuffs --> -resist, -damage, -regen, -recharge, -to hit.¬† Buffs --> just kind of flip the above; +resist, +damage, +regen, +absorb, +heal and HoT, +to hit, +end discount.¬† Electric Affinity is similar though I don't see -resist but do see a +recharge.¬† I just haven't given them a try yet, so I couldn't bring one ūüėČ.¬† About the only thing I'd be wanting to add i don't believe you can with a defender, namely DDR.¬† Incarnates can solve that for the 45+ teams.¬† That's only found in Fade from Darkness Affinity.¬† Having multiple SR characters has taught me how valuable keeping your defenses intact can be.¬† That 5-man team many issues back was a Dark themed group: 4 defenders Dark/Dark, Dark Archery, Cold/Dark, Sonic/Dark and our 'spear tip' a DM/Willpower scrapper probably sometime in i13 to i16.¬† Never really got to run them as a group past Faultline ... our own worst enemy they succumbed to boredom.

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Yup. 801s feature a lot of debuffs. Dark Affinity Controller is probably more useful than a Time Defender for 801s simply because there's a lot of -def flying around. 

 

Ageless radial is also excellent for the debuff protection (saved my Rad tank soloing one of the lower 801s multiple times, gave me time to beat a retreat to a choke point and regroup/recharge).

 

 +resist, absorb and heals are really useful. RDR is built into resists. Nature's healing patch is useful too because the fights tend to be more prolonged and based on choke points (you really don't want to just charge into a room, they've +perception and there's plenty of patrols wandering around).

 

Personally of my rota of supports I'd bring Carni (illusion/dark) with an Ageless radial if I was asked to bring a defensive support.

 

Mind you watch out for the odd Tar Patcher in 801s. Mob tar patch is still the unresistible version for some reason. Dropping from 85%/90% to ~60% hurts like hell. Thankfully Tar Patch debuffs only last while you're standing on one. 

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I have a Cold/Beam defender that has performed really well in 801 and relentless Aeon. Agree that Nature is also very good. Haven't played Electric.

Uunderdog - Radiation/Radiation Scrapper | Uundertaker - Radiation/Dark Corruptor | Uun - Martial Arts/Invulnerability Scrapper | Uunison - Gravity/Storm Controller | Uuncola - Ice/Temporal Blaster | Uundergrowth - Plant/Martial Dominator

Uunstable - Super Reflexes/Staff Fighting Tanker | Uunreal - Fire/Time Corruptor | Uunrest - Dark/Tactical Arrow Blaster | Uunseen - Illusion/Poison Controller | Uuncool - Cold/Beam Rifle Defender | Uunderground - Earth/Earth Dominator

Uunknown - Mind/Psionic Dominator | Uunplugged - Stone/Electric Brute | Uunfair - Archery/Trick Arrow Corruptor | Uunsung - Dual Pistols/Ninja Blaster | Uunflammable - Fire/Nature Controller | Uunflappable - War Mace/Willpower Brute

Uundead - Dark/Dark Tank | Uunfit - Water/Martial Blaster | Uunwrapped - Dark/Dark Dominator | Uunchill - Ice/Kinetics Corruptor | Uunpleasant - Energy/Energy Stalker | Uunbrella - Radiation/Radiation Sentinel | Uunsafari - Beasts/Traps MM

Uungnome - Nature/Seismic Defender | Uunsavory - Poson/Sonic Defender | Uunicycle - Broad Sword/Shield Scrapper | Uuntouchable - Illusion/Time Controller | Uunferno - Fire/Fire Tank

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I'm kind of surprised that TA/ is not being mentioned.

 

I'd imagine bringing one with autohit FA maxed as much as possible (up to 66.9% according to mids half of which is non-resistable). Then pack spirit ward and aid other for the ride and adjust as needed. I've not been playing much recently so no 801 experience behind me but it seems to me that would do significantly to help team.

Edited by Ankhammon
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5 hours ago, Ankhammon said:

I'm kind of surprised that TA/ is not being mentioned.

 

I'd imagine bringing one with autohit FA maxed as much as possible (up to 66.9% according to mids half of which is non-resistable). Then pack spirit ward and aid other for the ride and adjust as needed. I've not been playing much recently so no 801 experience behind me but it seems to me that would do significantly to help team.

 

Yeah I'm a bit surprised too but I take it that most haven't played it much since it is a real busy set.  I was tanking the special Vanguard fight on Aeon with a TA/Dual Pistols on the team,  the fight felt much easier than any other time where I didn't have a TA on the team.  Went ahead and made one the next day and I am not disappointed. 

 

The variety of debuffs available in the set is outstanding there's all kinds of tricks in TA's sleeves plus EMP Arrow is such a great power along with being a mez shield.  I had to learn binds to get the most out of it but once I set that up it's such a strong fun character to play and making me learn binds only served to make other characters I play easier.  

 

The only thing I'd take would be the TA/DP; all that -dmg, -tohitt, -resistance, -regen and Acid Arrow with all of those unique debuffs.  

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The harder and harder the challenge is, the more Nature and Electric Affinity simply leave the rest behind when trying to survive the most extreme of challenges and coming up with the ideal support. 
No one will do anything while face planting. The harder the content, the more likely death is so very near to everyone in the team. 
That's the number one thing to address. 
Debuffs come second to the the above priority. 
Yes debuffs are immensely helpful. 
But no one will dmg nor debuff while dead. 



 

Edited by Voltak
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    It's the AT's fault!  16 choices and you want just the top choice (or 2, maybe 3)!!

 

     As for TA a lot of that I'd hazard to guess stems from the fact it is a pure debuff set.  Any debuff strategy has at least 2 things to overcome that a buff set does not.  First to gain benefit you have to survive long enough to apply those debuffs so you and the team can benefit.  Second is the Purple Patch.  AFAIK the Purple Patch still applies for "unresistable" debuffs.  Meaning in general you need twice the strength in debuffs you'd need as buffs even if unresisted.  66.9% To Hit debuff, half unresisted is up against enough foe To Hit to require something in the area of 80% defense to stay defense capped and still faces the issue of surviving applying the debuff.  The amounts of stealth most players have won't cut it when the foes base perception is 66ft, possible, probably buffed further and may involve Snipers to boot.  Much easier and more reliable to Power Boost Fortitude or Force Fields or the like.

 

Edit:  Durnnit Ninja'd by @Voltakwho managed to say what my wordy self said more succinctly... Dead folks don't debuff anyone.

Edited by Doomguide2005
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1 minute ago, Doomguide2005 said:

    It's the AT's fault!  16 choices and you want just the top choice (or 2, maybe 3)!!

 

     As for TA a lot of that I'd hazard to guess stems from the fact it is a pure debuff set.  Any debuff strategy has at least 2 things to overcome that a buff set does not.  First to gain benefit you have to survive long enough to apply those debuffs so you and the team can benefit.  Second is the Purple Patch.  AFAIK the Purple Patch still applies for "unresistable" debuffs.  Meaning in general you need twice the strength in debuffs you'd need as buffs even if unresisted.  66.9% To Hit debuff, half unresisted is up against enough foe To Hit to require something in the area of 80% defense to stay defense capped and still faces the issue of surviving applying the debuff.  The amounts of stealth most players have won't cut it when the foes base perception is 66ft, possible, probably buffed further and may involve Snipers to boot.  Much easier and more reliable to Power Boost Fortitude or Force Fields or the like.


In defense to Trick Arrow, and why I think Trick Arrow is the king of debuffs --

Trick arrow has something that no one else has. 

You know all those resists to debuffs that enemies have ?
You know all those resists that purple patch have?

Enter ACID ARROW !!   The only power in the game in a debuff set that will LOWER THE RESISTANCES  TO THE DEBUFFS. 

It is why in one of my super hard AE challenges, I feature trick arrow enemies.  
They will melt any team that thinks they are going to make it with a conventional team make up. 
You have an SR tank that thinks he is immune to defense debuffs ?

Enemies with trick arrow will quickly make the defenses of an SR tank , or , to be precise, his resistance to defense debuffs, a trick arrow will kill that, ACID ARROW !  

I had the best of the best tankers, even Linea, die on the very first mob.  Acid arrow was a huge reason why. 

It kills the resistances to the debuffs. 

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4 minutes ago, Doomguide2005 said:

 As for TA a lot of that I'd hazard to guess stems from the fact it is a pure debuff set.  Any debuff strategy has at least 2 things to overcome that a buff set does not.  First to gain benefit you have to survive long enough to apply those debuffs so you and the team can benefit.  Second is the Purple Patch.  AFAIK the Purple Patch still applies for "unresistable" debuffs.  Meaning in general you need twice the strength in debuffs you'd need as buffs even if unresisted.  66.9% To Hit debuff, half unresisted is up against enough foe To Hit to require something in the area of 80% defense to stay defense capped and still faces the issue of surviving applying the debuff.  The amounts of stealth most players have won't cut it when the foes base perception is 66ft, possible, probably buffed further and may involve Snipers to boot.  Much easier and more reliable to Power Boost Fortitude or Force Fields or the like.

 

It's not just purely a debuff set.  You should have a gander at what all EMP Arrow does.  Not only is it a great target location debuff but it gives you a self buffing ability with lots of nice resistance, resistance to end drain and a mez shield.  What other sets have a self applying mez shield?  

 

Then you have Acid Arrow which debuffs unique things like the targets mez resistance and all kinds of other special things that compound on top of all of your other debuffs.  

 

Stealth + the Stealth IO = Pretty much invisible.  Then toss in Flash Arrow on top of that yeah no ones seeing you.

 

If you're already defense capped and have high resistance what good is more defense and a resist shield?  All the -dmg and -tohitt would seem to me to be a much more effective way of magnifying your resist/defense.  

 

About the only thing TA doesn't bring is a way to heal but that's what things like Rebirth and the Medicine pool are for.  

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I believe it.¬† A lot of the thread is all about which¬†one¬†defender you'd bring.¬† That by most accounts should be an oxymoron.¬† Defenders are at their best hunting in packs.¬† ¬†If the team already had 1 Nature Affinity and 1 Electric Affinity ... then by all means the short list is going to include Trick Arrow ūüėĀ¬† Don't get me wrong I'd love to add TA to the mix against hard stuff.¬† But you have to have a way to survive to lay those debuffs in the first place.

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In all respect and knowledge about Trick Arrow, and I think it is phenomenal. 

Again --  I am very sorry to repeat but this point has no refutation or there is no way around it -->

The harder and harder the challenge is, the more Nature and Electric Affinity simply leave the rest behind when trying to survive the most extreme of challenges and coming up with the ideal support. 
No one will do anything while face planting. The harder the content, the more likely death is so very near to everyone in the team. 
That's the number one thing to address. 

WE can bring a trick arrow to the team, yes, as long we have make room for ELec Affinity or Nature, or both of them. 

Then we can include Trick Arrow if there's room.  But priority?  Elec Affinity and Nature to keep team alive. 

The tougher the challenges, the more and more Rebirth and medicine pool are no where near sufficient to keep the team alive to debuff or deal damage. 

Edited by Voltak
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Purple Patch doesn't affect unresistable debuff, my TAs don't build for soft capped defense for this reason.  Defenders can get about 14% unresisted to-hit debuff out of flash arrow against all mobs, then another 14% resistable.

 

Now, that being said, I still don't think I'd choose TA as the one defender to bring on hard content.  It's one of my favorite sets, but you want a more even combination of buffs and debuffs.  I personally don't like playing EA that much, but Voltak is right, it's a monster set.  The other combo I'd consider is the classic Rad/Sonic

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What this team needs is more Defenders

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3 minutes ago, Doomguide2005 said:

But you have to have a way to survive to lay those debuffs in the first place.

 

Well you're capable of being up there with the stealthiest characters in the game so you have first crack at how you want to engage.  Lead in with a Power Built Up Flash Arrow so you're defenses are magnified then you can always power boost things like Unleash Potential if you feel inadequate then you can commence with laying down all your wicked debuffs. 

 

Flash Arrow then get the party started with EMP Arrow when you're ready to fight along with all of those other debuffs and watch everything around you melt with barely any potential scratches.  

 

I know Nature is quite good and tanky but all things being equal I'd take a TA first and foremost on something like a Relentless Aeon run if the player's skill level is equal.  

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9 minutes ago, Mezmera said:

 

If you're already defense capped and have high resistance what good is more defense and a resist shield?  All the -dmg and -tohitt would seem to me to be a much more effective way of magnifying your resist/defense.  

That's just it.   Maintaining 24-7 defenses in the 80%'s takes a lot of effort (or a lot of team discipline or both) especially if getting bombarded by defense debuffs and a whole mess of other debuffs.  But yes if you can keep the numbers needed then yes start applying those debuffs.

 

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4 minutes ago, Psyonico said:

Purple Patch doesn't affect unresistable debuff, my TAs don't build for soft capped defense for this reason.  Defenders can get about 14% unresisted to-hit debuff out of flash arrow against all mobs, then another 14% resistable.

 

Now, that being said, I still don't think I'd choose TA as the one defender to bring on hard content.  It's one of my favorite sets, but you want a more even combination of buffs and debuffs.  I personally don't like playing EA that much, but Voltak is right, it's a monster set.  The other combo I'd consider is the classic Rad/Sonic

I love your signature , Psyonico

What this team needs is more defenders.  It's awesome

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