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Force Field suggestions / personal opinion review

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I'm a long-time Force Field player. My first 50 on live was a bubbler, back when the bubbles were all single target; and I still break out my homecoming bubbler on the regular. Unfortunately, with the new endgame content, the age of Force Fields is really starting to show. The set still has strong potential, but I feel it's now in very real danger of becoming completely obsolete.


First, I'd like to review the set as it currently stands. The following are my own personal opinions, which may not align with yours.


ForceField_PersonalForceField.png Personal Force Field - Utility 0.5/5

With about 2x the defense as the soft cap and 40% resistance to everything, this power... lets you run away from a fight and abandon your team or allies? And that's if you can push the button quickly enough to not die during its 2.03s casting time. Unfortunately, Force Field has no real way to leverage its own survival in a team wipe situation and since PFF also selfishly disables most of the rest of the set, using it to save your own life may result in an actual team wipe. PFF falls into a "so powerful it's bad" situation, it's just too situational.


ForceField_DeflectionShield.png Deflection Shield - Utility 4/5
The bread and butter of Force Field, granting allies Smashing, Lethal, and Melee defense as well as a 40% (!) resistance to toxic damage. It's good, but it could be better in a way that probably wouldn't be game breaking. Probably by adding psi defense or Defense Debuff Resistance, two things Force Field currently lacks.


ForceField_ForceBolt.png Force Bolt - Utility 1/5

Some people find knockbacks useful for mitigation when soloing, but Force Field has so much personal mitigation already that Force Bolt has very limited value outside of low level aside from playing Hellion Bowling in Atlas Park (and even at that, Force Bubble is secretly way better since it can yeet level 1 hellions so hard the server just deletes them rather than trying to figure out where they went). I'm not here to debate the merits of knockbacks, Force Bolt is fine but would be a power that could potentially be cut from the set if something better comes up.


ForceField_InsulationShield.png Insulation Shield - Utility 5/5
The other half of Force Field's raison d'etre, Insulation Shield grants defense to Fire, Cold, Energy, Negative, Ranged, and AOE as well as a an 86.5% resistance to endurance drain (take that, sappers!). Insulation Shield is amazing and I wouldn't touch it.


ForceField_RefractionShield.png Detention Field - Utility 0.1/5

One of the best powers in the set is followed by one of the worst. Another borderline mitigation tool, this would be better if bosses were a regular source of team wipes but the few things you'd want to use this on (surprise AVs) will probably resist it. Force Field is trying to play baby controller and it picked all the worst power types to do it with. In my experience, teammates hate intangible and this one lasts 30 seconds where the average Master Illusionist only stays intangible for about 5. I have been kicked from teams for using this, and Force Field doesn't really need it for solo survivability either. Even if it was high enough magnitude to intangible an AV, the AV would still get a full 30 seconds of free health regen out of it. The only reason this shouldn't be the very first power on the chopping block is because Repulsion Field is worse.


ForceField_DispersionBubble.png Dispersion Bubble - Utility 5/5
Offering PBAOE defense against most (The Def (All) is a lie :D, it's defense all except the incredibly rare Toxic!) as well as powerful mag 8.65 resistance to Hold, Immobilize, and Stun, D-Bubble is the core that makes the other good powers in Force Field work. Probably the single best power in the set and the one most people probably think of when they think of Force Field.


ForceField_RepulsionField.png Repulsion Field - Utility (can I go negative? Repulsion Field is an active detriment to the user) 0/5
The worst power in the set, and I doubt many people would argue. Repulsion Field is a PBAOE knockback that consumes 1% max endurance (unmodifiable) for each target knocked back in addition to its already hefty 0.78 end/s toggle cost. You might think "Wait, that doesn't sound so bad, just slot a KB to KD in it and turn yourself into a living ice patch!" Except that doesn't work. I've tested it. KB to KD drops the mag from 6.23 to 0.089, because it applies knockdown every second the target is in range and at the standard 0.67 KD you'd score a knockdown and then immediately yeet the target from the knockdown zone. So with KB to KD the enemy stands in range getting mildly annoyed for 2-10 seconds until Repulsion Field racks up enough magnitude to score a knockdown, scores 2-3 knockdowns, then clears and has to start over. So you're looking at roughly 8-12 ticks of knockdown consuming 8-12% of your maximum endurance to score 2-3 knockdowns on a single minion over a span of about 8 seconds. This is just a hilariously bad power. Despite having "repulsion" in the name, it doesn't do repel.


ForceField_RepulsionBomb.png Repulsion Bomb - Utility 2/5

Another mitigation power, I actually have no complaints about Repulsion Bomb aside from its huge 3.07 second casting time. It's a big AOE knockdown with a mag 2 minion stun which is great for breaking up a fresh mob's alpha; because it's AOE it's also a great mule for Force Feedback Chance for +Recharge assuming your primary doesn't have a faster-casting power that does the job better (like M30 grenade). I would gladly trade the stun component for a faster cast time. Another power with "Repulsion" in the name that doesn't do repel.


ForceField_ForceBubble.png Force Bubble - Utility 2/5

Despite having 'force' in the name, this is a PBAOE Mag 10 repel with a massive 50ft radius. This is a far better power than Repulsion Field, costs less endurance, affects a much larger area, and doesn't eat 1% of the user's maximum endurance for every enemy that thinks about touching it. Anything in the field will also suffer ticks of a 0.1 mag knockdown, so anything that resists the Repel (like AVs and some bosses) will start eating knockdowns if they don't resist those too. This is a great way to keep mobs at a safe distance, to 'reset' a botched engage, or (in the right places) to cram multiple spawns into a corner so blasters can blow them all up. It's a situational but very powerful Tier 9 and I love it.




So, Force Field is a weird set. It's got powerful team buffs coupled to utility knockdowns and baby control powers. What it doesn't have are enemy debuffs of any kind, psi and toxic defense, defense debuff resistance, or any sort of instant-gratification endgame damage mitigation power.


As such, I've got a couple of ideas for power tweaks and even new powers that could potentially replace some of the worse powers in the set (like Repulsion Field and Detention Field).



Current Power Suggestions:

Add Defense Debuff Resistance to one of the powers in the set, since Force Field does very little to protect against "cascading defense failure." My personal suggestion would be to add it to Dispersion Bubble; but it would also work in either deflection or insulation shield. Adding Defense Debuff Resistance somewhere would mean Force Fielders are still useful to players who are already at the defense cap, and would be much appreciated by sets like Ninjutsu which have lower DDR. I'd personally prefer to put this in Dispersion Bubble, but if it does go into deflection or insulation shield it should probably be made exclusive (so multiple bubblers on the same team can't stack DDR).


Add psi defense to Deflection Shield or Insulation Shield.

ForceField_PersonalForceField.png Personal Force Field
Remove the damage resistance, and reduce the defense value of PFF to 2x the value of Dispersion Bubble (so 20% defense for defenders), add all of Dispersion Bubble's mez resistances (and defense debuff resistance if that gets added to D-Bubble). Remove the "only affecting self" limitation and make PFF mutually exclusive with Dispersion Bubble (the same way Stealth and Infiltration are mutually exclusive with each other). This effectively turns PFF into a 'selfish' version of Dispersion Bubble, allowing the user to play Baby Sentinel while soloing OR deploy the d-bubble to protect a team.


ForceField_RepulsionBomb.png Repulsion Bomb

Change the name to Force Bomb. It's not an AOE Knockback anymore (thank you so much, OG Devs!), and it doesn't do repel.

- Idea: remove the disorient component and reduce the cast time to something reasonable, like 1.5 seconds. Move this from Tier 8 (!) to Tier 5 (Detention Field's current spot)


GravityControl_DimensionShift2.png Detention Field

This idea is definitely too powerful for a support set, and is also much too strong to exist at Detention Field's current power tier.

- Idea: Turn Detention Field into a PBAOE intangible toggle (like Dimension Shift except PBAOE) with escalating costs and/or a mag 1000 immobilize on the user. While active, all targets (friendly and enemy) inside the radius are dimension shifted, allowing them to attack other intangible targets and take no damage from normal targets. This would give Force Field a tool to protect against surprise ambushes or otherwise limit the number of things that can effectively attack protected allies. This should probably suppress Force Field's other toggles while active, and teams (and especially raids!) will still hate this and probably kick you for using it. If you do go with this, move it up to Tier 8.



New Power Ideas:
ShockTherapy_InsulatingCircuit.png Ablative Shield

A single target high-value Absorption shield (perhaps even % of target max HP based?) with a 15-30 second duration that also grants the target a hefty amount of defense debuff resistance for the duration. It should probably be on a long cooldown, say--about the same as fortitude? So 60 seconds base. Have a blaster who loves engaging? Tank took way more damage from an AV than they expected? Scrapper keeps beefing it to Romans javelins? Something just went completely weird? Ablative Shield can actually help! Dump Repulsion Field for this, please!

ColdDomination_Benumb.png Disruption Bubbles / Aneurism
Insert joke about the invisible woman putting a force field in someone's brain.

Idea: A single target high value -regen, -healing received debuff about on par with benumb on a long-ish cooldown. Something like this would be a good fit for Detention Field's current spot.


ColdDomination Infrigidate.png Incarcerate

Wraps the target's joints in force fields, greatly reducing their ability to move, dodge, or block incoming attacks.

Idea: A single target -recharge, slow, -def, -resist debuff on a short-ish cooldown. Another contender for Detention Field's current spot, with the added benefit of sharing the same general concept as Detention Field. I don't think any teams would complain about Force Field having a reasonably strong single target slow that also makes the affected target easier to kill.



I love Force Field. It's just such a dated set, I think it needs a little something to modernize it--and I think absorb is that something. Getting rid of the almost redundant Repulsion Field in exchange for Ablative Shield is my #1 wish for Force Field; followed by replacing Detention Field with a debuff; and then changing PFF to be a 'selfish' version of D-Bubble.


Even if nothing else gets adopted or considered I think absorption fits in perfectly with Force Field's concept; and if it works for Force Field, a big single target absorb might also fit into Sonic Resonance pretty nicely as well...

Edited by PoptartsNinja
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