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Shield Defense Ultimate Team Tanker: What Secondary?


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Hi everyone!  


So I'm a big believer that Shield Defense is the "Ultimate Team Tank" primary. Of course some others can be AMAZING, I just personally love how Shield buffs your allies, has the ability to hard engage and is just a literal SHIELD for your team to stand  behind haha  


Anyways, with that being said, if I wanted to build the ultimate Shield Tanker for keeping my allies alive in Hard Mode/Aeon content, what secondary would you pair it with? These are the ones I've been looking at (and mostly theoretical):  


**Shield/Elec:** With it's double teleports attacks, you basically have an Alpha Strike for every mob. Single Target dmg is lacking, but AOE is insane and you're there to just to be unkillable and arrest baddies, right? Probably "feels" the most powerful out of the combos due to Shield Charge and Lightning Rod.  


**Shield/MA:** I believe some crazy stuff was performed with this combo in the past. MA can basically bring up all of Shields positional defenses to incarnate levels, and you can build heavy resists underneath it. Dragon's tail fires off really quick and can keep mobs down and if you slot a FF into it, it'll fire off to really pump up the recharge.  


**Shield/Battle Axe:** Originally was looking at BS, but the new Battle Axe seems great. Good area control and some FF potential!


**Shield/Kinetic Melee:** This combo is my "dark horse" and kind of under the radar strong. Shield Charge + Burst allows you to really keep mobs on their butt. Burst refreshes quickly, and can slot FF and -resist. The BIG synergy is that AAO in shield causes foes to do -Dmg, as does KM attacks. So you're effectively lowering the damage that enemies do to your team just by... being you. Heck, you could grab Darkest Night epic power as well and further tank their damage. You also have two ranged attacks for runners that also have knockdown for great crowd control.
 

**Shield/Stone Melee** From what I witnessed, Stone seems to hit like a truck and has great crowd control. Good FF slotting as well. I could see it being endurance heavy. 


**Shield/Super Strength:** I feel like this is a satisfying classic. AAO + Rage will make you a damage powerhouse. Yeah, rage drop will tank that damage, BUT you still bring a lot of utility with Shield Charge + Foot Stomp.

 

**Shield/Dark Melee:** I've ran this on a Scrapper, and I feel like it is PROBABLY the most selfish. It brings a nice heal to shield, and good AOE. Outside of the -Tohit DM attacks provide though, it doesn't really do much else to help keep you TEAMMATES alive. Still an amazing combo on a Tanker I'm sure though.  


I'd love to hear the community's thoughts and/or suggestions! Obviously, I've really enjoyed my Shield Scrapper and I want to give one of these a whirl on a Tanker.

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From my experience with Hard Mode content, you'll want to choose a melee that has emphasis on ST damage while allowing you as many slotting opportunities as possible. If you're rolling Tanker, you should let the higher damage ATs handle clearing the mobs you gather up. Yes, I know that sounds backwards since Tankers are (currently) the AoE kings out of the melee ATs, but where teams tend to get stopped are the DPS checks in the AV fights.

 

To that respect, I'd recommend:

 

Martial Arts (nice consistent ST DPS and Dragons Tail is just good, excellent safety)

Battle Axe (hits extremely hard ST, FF procs everywhere, just watch your end)

Stone Melee (same as above)

Super Strength (the "balls to the wall" choice)

Energy Melee (ST damage king, but lax slotting opportunities)

 

EDIT: My Dark Horse pick would actually be Dark Melee. It has a history of suffering DPS-wise on big targets since it's BnB is jackknifing it's damage via Soul Drain. However, if a good number of your teammates happen to have a Mobile Dummy Combatant, then you can ping Soul Drain off of those during AVs to keep your damage healthy!

Edited by Spaghetti Betty
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54 minutes ago, Spaghetti Betty said:

From my experience with Hard Mode content, you'll want to choose a melee that has emphasis on ST damage while allowing you as many slotting opportunities as possible. If you're rolling Tanker, you should let the higher damage ATs handle clearing the mobs you gather up. Yes, I know that sounds backwards since Tankers are (currently) the AoE kings out of the melee ATs, but where teams tends to get stopped are the DPS checks in the AV fights.

 

To that respect, I'd recommend:

 

Martial Arts (nice consistent ST DPS and Dragons Tail is just good, excellent safety)

Battle Axe (hits extremely hard ST, FF procs everywhere, just watch your end)

Stone Melee (same as above)

Super Strength (the "balls to the wall" choice)

Energy Melee (ST damage king, but lax slotting opportunities)

 

EDIT: My Dark Horse pick would actually be Dark Melee. It has a history of suffering DPS-wise on big targets since it's BnB is jackknifing it's damage via Soul Drain. However, if a good number of your teammates happen to have a Mobile Dummy Combatant, then you can ping Soul Drain off of those during AVs to keep your damage healthy!

First off, SUPER clever about the mobile dummy. I did have a DM/Shield SCRAPPER on live, which might be why it was one of my lower choices.

 

Battle Axe, Stone Melee and SS seem like they all fill kind of the hard hitting, heavy CC style. Would you push for one over the others. Something SEEMS like Stone has the most CC, and can slot some absorb procs with its hold. SS might have the highest upside damage wise with Rage, but idk if rage crash would totally kill it.

 

MA seems like it could be a min/max choice. I was reading through an old “Tank Gods” thread and it seems @Werner did some crazy things with a Shield/MA Tanker. That being said, it could just be that it’s the optimal SOLO choice compared to being the best team choice when it comes to keeping your teammates alive.

 

 

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1 hour ago, BuiltDifferent5 said:

Battle Axe, Stone Melee and SS seem like they all fill kind of the hard hitting, heavy CC style. Would you push for one over the others. Something SEEMS like Stone has the most CC, and can slot some absorb procs with its hold.

I would consider Battle Axe to be the top performer out of these 3 picks. Stone Melee isn't as volatile End-wise but doesn't dish out as much damage as Axe can. SS IMO falls somewhere in the middle of the two.

 

One important thing to note is that if you're going to be running starred ITFs a lot is that Cimerorans are highly protected against most forms of mez (I think they aren't as resistant to confuse but I need someone to fact check that) - the main exception being that Surgeons can be trapped by low mag KD/KB - so Stone ends up losing some of its CC in that scenario. Having a strong hold to stack on AVs is a big plus, so it's ultimately up to the user to decide where they want to give and take.

 

I'm biased towards SS. I run a Rad/SS Tank and a SS/Regen Brute for 4* runs.

 

Just remember that if you're pairing any of these with Shield, you'll need something helping your End (preferably a support teammate). 

 

1 hour ago, BuiltDifferent5 said:

MA seems like it could be a min/max choice. I was reading through an old “Tank Gods” thread and it seems @Werner did some crazy things with a Shield/MA Tanker. That being said, it could just be that it’s the optimal SOLO choice compared to being the best team choice when it comes to keeping your teammates alive.

If you opt for Shield/MA, there's nothing wrong with having a strong amount of safety for your teammates to build on, just don't sacrifice damage in order to get it. A dead foe can't hit you!

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11 minutes ago, Spaghetti Betty said:

I would consider Battle Axe to be the top performer out of these 3 picks. Stone Melee isn't as volatile End-wise but doesn't dish out as much damage as Axe can. SS IMO falls somewhere in the middle of the two.

 

One important thing to note is that if you're going to be running starred ITFs a lot is that Cimerorans are highly protected against most forms of mez (I think they aren't as resistant to confuse but I need someone to fact check that), the main exception being that Surgeons can be trapped by low mag KD/KB, so Stone ends up losing some of its CC in that scenario. Having a strong hold to stack is a big plus, so it's ultimately up to the user to decide where they want to give and take.

 

I'm biased towards SS. I run a Rad/SS Tank and a SS/Regen Brute for 4* runs.

 

Just remember that if you're pairing any of these with Shield, you'll need something helping your End (preferably a support teammate). 

 

If you opt for Shield/MA, there's nothing wrong with having a strong amount of safety for your teammates to build on, just don't sacrifice damage in order to get it. A dead foe can't hit you!

Tons of help Betty, thank you.

 

I know the synergy for Rad/SS is the procs Rad Armor holds isn’t impacted by the rage crash… could you see the Rage crash really neutering Shield? I’m wondering if AAO would help with that.

 

And good cal out for Shield/MA. I guess the best defense is a good offense in some cases 😂 Storm kick could free you up to slot some more damage.

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1 minute ago, BuiltDifferent5 said:

I know the synergy for Rad/SS is the procs Rad Armor holds isn’t impacted by the rage crash… could you see the Rage crash really neutering Shield? I’m wondering if AAO would help with that.

 

You have the right idea with procs. Advanced SS play is proccing KO Blow, Foot Stomp, Cross Punch, and your preferred Epic Blast (or Char. Char is good) so you can A) do big dummy damage in Rage and B) still do something while crashing. Rage crash is -10000% DMG, so AAO won't be doing much for you while crashing. Good thing it's only 10 seconds!

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43 minutes ago, Spaghetti Betty said:

You have the right idea with procs. Advanced SS play is proccing KO Blow, Foot Stomp, Cross Punch, and your preferred Epic Blast (or Char. Char is good) so you can A) do big dummy damage in Rage and B) still do something while crashing. Rage crash is -10000% DMG, so AAO won't be doing much for you while crashing. Good thing it's only 10 seconds!

All of this is noted.

 

The dmg crash is one thing, which hopefully procs help and your team can cover for those 10 seconds. My bigger concern is the Def dropping. For a primarily defensive set like Shield, would that neuter it? Or is the defense crash not that significant?

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12 minutes ago, BuiltDifferent5 said:

All of this is noted.

 

The dmg crash is one thing, which hopefully procs help and your team can cover for those 10 seconds. My bigger concern is the Def dropping. For a primarily defensive set like Shield, would that neuter it? Or is the defense crash not that significant?

In the meta sense? No. For the tippy top of difficulty, teams should be coordinating at least 6 Barriers and/or have massive +DEF coming from support ATs to ensure a smooth run. In theory, you shouldn't notice a huge difference from the -DEF.

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3 minutes ago, Spaghetti Betty said:

In the meta sense? No. For the tippy top of difficulty, teams should be coordinating at least 6 Barriers and/or have massive +DEF coming from support ATs to ensure a smooth run. In theory, you shouldn't notice a huge difference from the -DEF.

Makes sense. Could even look to work Hand Clap into the build if I care about it that much. When the crash happens, use it and Foot stomp to keep baddies on their back and the 10 seconds is almost over.

 

That being said, I guess I could go MA, Stone Melee or Battle Axe and just not even worry about it 😂

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Street Justice is quite a good secondary if you know how to make use of it.  The biggest gripe about StJ before the tanker revamp was how small the aoes were but now that Spinning Strike is 9ft instead of 6ft it does feel a lot more useful. 

 

One of the best things about StJ is that the combo mechanic at max stacks will allow you to do highest damage comparably to any other tankers best aoe or ST attack.  Max stack Spinning Strike does the best aoe damage and you have that uber Shield Charge to fill in for any extra aoe that you ma feel might be missing.

 

A max stack Crushing Uppercut is the best ST damage you can get on a tank and it also procs really well even if you have the power slotted with a bit of a set.  You can slot all kinds of hold procs into this one which on my proc build I have 3 of the Hecatombs with the dmg proc and then 3 more hold dmg procs, on my regular tanky build I sub in 2 of the Entombs with that nice Absorb Proc which between that and the tanker one I have a 900+ absorb shield always running.  

 

Then Rib Cracker is a nice little attack which comes with some debuffing of the targets resistances and damage output.  

 

Street Justice is a very fun and fluid set that you can get by with paring down to the best stuff which will allow you room for other things.  

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1 hour ago, Mezmera said:

Street Justice is quite a good secondary if you know how to make use of it.  The biggest gripe about StJ before the tanker revamp was how small the aoes were but now that Spinning Strike is 9ft instead of 6ft it does feel a lot more useful. 

 

One of the best things about StJ is that the combo mechanic at max stacks will allow you to do highest damage comparably to any other tankers best aoe or ST attack.  Max stack Spinning Strike does the best aoe damage and you have that uber Shield Charge to fill in for any extra aoe that you ma feel might be missing.

 

A max stack Crushing Uppercut is the best ST damage you can get on a tank and it also procs really well even if you have the power slotted with a bit of a set.  You can slot all kinds of hold procs into this one which on my proc build I have 3 of the Hecatombs with the dmg proc and then 3 more hold dmg procs, on my regular tanky build I sub in 2 of the Entombs with that nice Absorb Proc which between that and the tanker one I have a 900+ absorb shield always running.  

 

Then Rib Cracker is a nice little attack which comes with some debuffing of the targets resistances and damage output.  

 

Street Justice is a very fun and fluid set that you can get by with paring down to the best stuff which will allow you room for other things.  

I do agree agree that StJ is one of the most aesthetically pleasing sets haha. I didn’t know that CU brought the highest ST damage for a Tanker!


My only hesitation with the combo is what it brings outside of damage compared to some of the other secondaries. That being said, I guess Spinning Strike has a knockdown and CU brings some CC? And you mentioned the debuff from Rib Cracker, which I overlooked. Could be nice for the tough AV fights in HM!

 

I was also thinking StJ didn’t have a great follow up to Shield Charge compared to some other sets. Re-thinking it though, it seems decent. Hit Combat Readiness - Shield Charge in, use Spinning Strike spender followed by your standard combos to end with Crushing Uppercut spender.

 

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2 hours ago, BuiltDifferent5 said:

I do agree agree that StJ is one of the most aesthetically pleasing sets haha. I didn’t know that CU brought the highest ST damage for a Tanker!


My only hesitation with the combo is what it brings outside of damage compared to some of the other secondaries. That being said, I guess Spinning Strike has a knockdown and CU brings some CC? And you mentioned the debuff from Rib Cracker, which I overlooked. Could be nice for the tough AV fights in HM!

 

I was also thinking StJ didn’t have a great follow up to Shield Charge compared to some other sets. Re-thinking it though, it seems decent. Hit Combat Readiness - Shield Charge in, use Spinning Strike spender followed by your standard combos to end with Crushing Uppercut spender.

 

 

Yes Spinning Strike with the bigger aoe now and having highest damage is quite nice, you can also slot a Force Feedback proc into it which it'll always fire.  Typically yes I'll hit Combat Readiness into a Shield Charge then let the targets I just aggro'd group up on me a bit then I'll use Spinning Strike while the BU effect is still active. 

 

Then if the target count is low with tougher targets then I'll make use of the Crushing Uppercut with the max stacks.  CU is real good it's both a hold and a stun and can slot lots of interesting procs which are sure fire based on the powers internal recharge even if you slot in some recharge.  

 

It is also pretty easy to build up to max combo with the other faster attacks like Rib Cracker and the t1 so that it's not just the BU effect that's optimizing your top damage output which other sets can't match.  

 

I have a StJ Stalker so I knew it was a strong set with top tier ST damage only second to the newly revamped EM so I gave it a chance on tank long ago.  The problem was always how small Spinning Strike was but with the added area it feels great now for the damage it puts out.

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A Shield/BA or Ice melee could offer some control. Ice has the ice patch and slow. Battle Axe can help keep mobs in a ball with Axe Cyclone. 

Add in some control/debuffs from the epic pool like quick sand, darkest night etc,

 

Drop a Quick sand and Fold space mobs in. Drop ice patch or use AC to keep them there for example. Throw in Stalagmites and fossilize to if you want. 

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