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Mechanical Options Idea for Minion Users

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Halae's picture
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Mechanical Options Idea for Minion Users

So, I was giving it some thought, and realized that the mechanical side of the operator; we have a lot of threads dedicated to the customization and aesthetics of the minions in question, but we don't focus a lot of the mechanical side of those powers, so I figured we might want to address that. From what I could figure out with some discussion with a friend, there's four overall "types" of minions, and three design strategies they'd work with. This'd make choosing your minions essentially a two step process, even before getting into appearance customization and aesthetic decoupling.

First, determine their role. There's three clear roles that Minions can cover, though the developers could possibly choose to include more:
--Assault (A mix of Melee and Range)

Second, you have four options for what the minions are:
--Automatons (robots, golems, undead, that sort of thing)
--Humans (Military, thugs, ninjas, etc.)
--Animals (a pack of wolves, a pair of lions, a wyvern or chimera, etc.)
--Summons (This'd be energy constructs, demons, elementals, and the like)

The purpose of this is twofold; first, the nature of the minion determines how it behaves, such as morale effects and overall intelligence. Automatons and Summons, most likely, would be on the low end of that scale, while humans and animals might have somewhat more tactical awareness, move to flanking positions, and that sort thing. The second is that it applies as a defensive powerset; automatons would have high psychic and physical resistance, but may be weaker to elemental stuff, while animals would likely be strong against hot, cold, and physical, but weak against psychic, poison, and electricity.

This would also have the additional benefit of essentially letting you do these in a similar way to the player characters themselves; that is, Primary and secondary powersets. Not too complex, builds on what already exists in the game, and gives the player additional control over how their minions operate, which is all good.

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desviper's picture
Last seen: 1 day 10 hours ago
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Someone's been on the Heroic

Someone's been on the Heroic Mastermind thread ;)

I'd advocate for minions to be more complicated than melee, ranged, and mixed: throw in some mez and support. Idk how the layout would be (hopefully not three tiered like CoH), but having at least one support minion I think could fill out a hopefully squishy Operator well.

E.g., Soldiers: 3-5 primarily ranged attackers, 1 medic, 2 melee/ranged bots, and 2 melee tank attackers.

This'll prove tricky for devs to balance.

I see both sides of minion types:

Freedom side:

Have minions totally decoupled: a melee ninja would be mechanically identical to a melee zombie. This allows the greatest freedom of aesthetic, but prevents any lore attachment to how you treat minions. This'd be easier to dev I think, since you don't have to write morality actions for minion events.

Lore-Friendly side:

Have minions pre-written into classes like above. This allows greater immersion since how you treat your minions is and would be a reflection of how your toon is as a person(?). But, this would decrease player choice and be harder to dev, since you have to write the events which affect morality.

I guess I side with FREEDOM *eagle screeches* but it'd be nice to have the lore mechanic.

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Godling's picture
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Joined: 11/02/2013 - 13:28
We probably need both as

We probably need both as players want to build their originals and sometimes they want to intermesh their character into the game world and have the appearance of particulate group.

blacke4dawn's picture
Last seen: 1 day 18 hours ago
Joined: 03/28/2015 - 03:02
Not sure I get the points

Not sure I get the points raised in OP.

On the point:
If I am choosing melee ranged or assault as my secondary set then I would like to have the option for pets that focus more on mitigation support control or defense. Personally I feel it's too limiting to only relegate pets to offensive "power sets" since I think that pets should be able to fill any and every role/focus/specialization that a player can, though perhaps not quite to the same extent. Maybe it would be easiest to just have a system where you have the same choices as the other AT's but limited to a subset of them, and having an appropriate modifier applied.

On point two:
Not sure what morality has to do with pets unless MWM is implementing a system where the pets can like/dislike you based on your actions, which would then necessitate being able to set a personality for them.
The groupings feel way to generic to assign resistances to. As for the AI stuff, it makes me feel like some sets can become objectively better than others, besides what says that f.i demons are dumber than animals. If resistances and AI would be "choosable" then I think it's better to tie them to the pet's power set(s). Though for AI I would make that a fairly simple choice in the form of target and ability-type priority.