Clueless In The Outskirts Of Paragon

As March ’09 storms in, I’m considering eschewing my Game Designer destiny and resubscribing to City of Heroes for the duration of this temp job.  A nearly full-time job doesn’t leave a lot of time for game development, and thwarting the infinitely respawning evil on the streets of Paragon City is about my speed after a long day of temp job ambiguity.

After several hundred hours of play, is the entertainment value still there adequately to resubscribe?  After all, just a few days ago, I admitted once again that I had seemingly played the game out, stuck in the same old rut of finding the archetypes with adequate variety to satisfy (Controllers and possibly Defenders) having too little damage output to stave off the boredom.

However, just last night I was running some tests that revealed a startling result: actually, my past experience with Defenders and Controllers were biased to think the base damage was worse than it actually was.  Now, I don’t know what to think.

The problem

A person’s satisfaction with aspects such as “reward rate” (damage inflicted being corely this) and “gameplay diversity” (my complaints about “variety” and “originality” being here) will be highly subjective.

As my own gameplay desires are bolstered by decades of game playing raising the bar, you can expect I’ll be a lot more picky than usual: I want an extremely high level of gameplay diversity at a reward rate that keeps monotony to a minimum.

City of Heroes is just diverse enough in character generation to allow me to revel in trying to find this magical combination.  However, my desire for originality makes the obvious answers unsatisfactory because being paired with another player with the same picks as I is incredibly boring to me.

So I’m left trying to build some kind of character with unusual picks (or that complements the usual picks nicely) that possesses a fun batch of variety in its powers and is still effective enough to cruise through the game without boring me to tears.

My Defender Damage Misconception

When playing Defenders, I usually quit by about level 20, when the archetype damage table was fully applied but just before they get their single origin enhancements.

Last night, I discovered that the few Defenders I had taken past 22, were leaning on invention enhancements, and only had about 40-60% +DMG when they could have had 90% if I just slotted them up with single origin enhancements.

The difference between a single origin enhanced defender and a dual origin enhance defender’s damage output may just be satisfying enough for me to solo.

My Controller Damage Misconception

My perspective on Controller damage was jaded by my main Controller being Illusion Control based.  It bothered me how long it would take to defeat a boss.

However, a recent batch of tests indicated this was actually highly unique to Illusion Control.  Where it would take a full minute for Illusion Control to take down a same-level boss, the average was half that.

The New Problem

Okay, so Defenders and Controllers aren’t so bad after all – at least if I see them to level 22 and take anything but Illusion without perma-Phantom Army.  Now, I turn back to the original problem as I saw it when my last hero hit 50: I want a character whose overall abilities should be diverse enough to entertain at level 50.

In short, I want to finally realize an ultimate City of Heroes character for me.  One that I can identify with enough to enjoy once all the achievement mechanic of hitting level 50 is over and done with.  I’d probably be there already if villains were allowed to defect (a Robots Mastermind being something I could really identify with, but I don’t like life on the Rogue Isles much).

I’ve some more brain wracking to do – if I can’t find something that looks good in Mid’s Hero Designer and plays good in the game at the top level, satisfaction will not be found.  Good thing I seem to enjoy wracking my brain.  If nothing else, it will keep me entertained until Champions Online is released.

2 Responses

  1. […] Clueless In The Outskirts Of Paragon […]

  2. […] pittance of honest wage was a three month subscription to the game and 5 more character slots.  My revitalized interest in Controllers has caused me to roll up a Gravity/Kinetics, Mind/Kinetics, Gravity/Storm, earning some 40 some […]

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