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Palladiamors
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Our options

So we have the engineer, ringleader, and the taskmaster. The engineer and ringleader seem obvious enough, but what about the taskmaster? What will that entail?

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According to the chart posted

http://cityoftitans.com/comment/19593#comment-19593

According to the chart posted: the Engineer is basically the MM from CoX, the Taskmaster summons their minions and assists by adding to the damage (probably a few self buffs too, but mostly just damage), and the Ringleader is also an offensive type but also assists his minions with holds on the enemy, debuffs, so on and so forth..

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Palladiamors
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So Engineer's will have a

So Engineer's will have a more support based selection of powers, while the other two will hit offense and debuffs. But out of curiousity, does that mean Engineers will have one set of minions and the other two different sets? Or will all three be able to select from a variety with only the secondary choices being different?

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Curious about this myself.

Curious about this myself. Are they thinking just different sets of Secondaries or what? Very curious.

I remember when Star Wars was cool...a long, long time ago...

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Palladiamors wrote:
Palladiamors wrote:

Or will all three be able to select from a variety with only the secondary choices being different?

^This is the correct statement. All will be able to choose from a variety of minions with the secondary being different. Primary determines the primary powersets, in this case Pets. Secondary determines secondary powersets, so Taskmaster will have the offensive powersets (ranged or melee? Who knows? Maybe it'll have both choices), Ringleader will have offensive/debuff powersets (think like Dark Miasma), and Engineer will have the support sets (Force Fields!)

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The /assault in taskmaster

The /assault in taskmaster implies a mix of ranged and melee in each set, just like Dominators in CoV.

The world is a mess and I just ... need to rule it.

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*nodnods* Yep.. and

*nodnods* Yep.. and Manipulation will be like a mini-corruptor/controller correct?

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Palladiamors
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Huh, sounds like we just got

Huh, sounds like we just got more flexible. I like. A lot.

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I'm going to have a tough

I'm going to have a tough time deciding between Taskmaster and Ringleader I think. All going to depend on what kind of minions we get to pick from at the get go I suppose!

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I hope we have some form of

I hope we have some form of mercenaries or gun toters. Mercs were my go-to minions in CoH. Yes, I know they were the worst powerset for Masterminds, but I still loved them deeply. Past that...I'll probably go Engineer, but I'll have some of everything just for flavor and mood. Ahhh, this is exciting!

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Thugs must have my thugs can

Thugs must have my thugs can't get caught getting my hands dirty.

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Well we have several staple

Well we have several staple minion types: Robots, Thugs, Mercenaries, Demons, Zombies, Ninjas and Animals. Not in any particular order but all of these have been seen time and again in movies and comics. Some of the classes (Robots and zombies for example) are broad categories but seem to be covered by one power set. People are obvious more varied (they're represented three times after all) but each is quite different from the others. Sad to say but we may not get all of these by launch. I'd be good with Robots, Zombies OR Demons and then Mercs OR Thugs. That covers Magic, Tech and Leader types as far as minions are concerned.

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I acknowledge that we may not

I acknowledge that we may not have all of these by launch, but I'd like to maybe even see the "zombie" category broken up. There are very different types of undead! Maybe split undead up into Zombies, Ghosts, Vampires, and even a general Undead category that includes different types (for the necromancer who doesnt need a specialization!)

Same logic for animals, make a couple different types to choose from - there is a big difference between the guy who uses wolves and other four-legged creatures and the guy who uses exclusively birds!

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GFN wrote:
GFN wrote:

*nodnods* Yep.. and Manipulation will be like a mini-corruptor/controller correct?

Manipulation will presumably be like the secondaries that Blaster had (like Fire Manipulation or Darkness Manipulation), most of which had a mishmash of powerful melee attacks, PBAoEs, light controls (usually one Immob and one Hold), and some buffs (usually a variant of Build Up).

Now that I think about it, it'd be perfect for a Tankermind playstyle. They could just rush in to use their melee and PBAoEs, while the pets take the damage.

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That'd be great IMO as long

That'd be great IMO as long as we can get have some choice on what attacks our Operators use (aside from pets). Thing I hated about them in CoH (As I've said in numerous places) was that pet choice also determined primary powers.. and I personally didn't want to be the necromancer that used darkness abilities but rather Energy (And not Energy manipulation...)

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GFN, given how customizable

GFN, given how customizable the devs have already stated that they want the powers to be, I can't see them forcing you into a specific damage type for a non-damage (e.g. pet control) set.

I could be wrong.

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How about Rabid Were

How about Rabid Were-Squirrels?

Be Well!
Fireheart

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Fireheart wrote:
Fireheart wrote:

How about Rabid Were-Squirrels?
Be Well!
Fireheart

My were-squirrels have had their shots.

Lord Nightmare
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Robotic Suicide Squirrels.

Robotic Suicide Squirrels.

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Lord Nightmare
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And Fire Apes on FIREhttp:/

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Im the guy rooting for

Im the guy rooting for Engineers. Gauntlet was a Bots/Dark Miasma guy. I lived by it and was very well-rounded. AoE Pull-heal, group stealth, group bubbles, bots healed themselves, a fear, a hold, and tar patch. My bots did ranged energy/smashing damage with missiles and flame thrower from my fully upgraded boss pet. Once the Incarnate powers dropped i truly, truly felt powerful with that character. And the unwillingness to get personally involved with the fights kept me out of a great deal of team-mate agro.

Until the Pet Run-In Bug. For the love of all that is Holy, please please PLEASE write 2 different A.I. personalities for pets. One melee and one ranged. Laser robots never ever need to go HUG an opponent to hurt him. Not even if they DO have a sledgehammer for a fist. That one failure in MM pet programming literally BROKE the class near sunset. Please make sure that is not a mistake that is repeated.

Yeah, that sounds like a Jedi. Massacre a whole room full of people, then stand around apologizing for it. - Swtor NPC

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Gauntlet wrote:
Gauntlet wrote:

Until the Pet Run-In Bug. For the love of all that is Holy, please please PLEASE write 2 different A.I. personalities for pets. One melee and one ranged. Laser robots never ever need to go HUG an opponent to hurt him. Not even if they DO have a sledgehammer for a fist. That one failure in MM pet programming literally BROKE the class near sunset. Please make sure that is not a mistake that is repeated.

Actually, I liked the fact that my robots started to use their melee attacks more often. Besides, most of the time they were in melee range from the mobs closing the distance anyway.

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This was behavior that really

This was behavior that really got on my nerves, as well. I'd tell the robots to attack and, often enough, the first thing they'd do is run up to the enemy and then start shooting. I'd be perfectly happy if the enemies closed to melee range while my minions lit them up.

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I THINK this bug was caused

I THINK this bug was caused by the reprogramming of the pet AI to cause pets like the Bruiser to stop only using Rock Throw. It happened about the time they released Demons or maybe because of Demons. There is a distinct difference between melee and ranged pets. But these guys know about that they played after all. No Worries.

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Gimme killer clowns!

Gimme killer clowns!

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Oh lord, not the killer

Oh lord, not the killer clown thing again.

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I would like to see Clones.

I would like to see Clones. Think Multiple Man from Marvel.

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Palladiamors wrote:
Palladiamors wrote:

Oh lord, not the killer clown thing again.

Don't fight it... /whisper

(Currently developing the Sapphire 7 Initiative)

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Gauntlet wrote:
Gauntlet wrote:

I would like to see Clones. Think Multiple Man from Marvel.

Ohhhhhh...I approve!

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Any chance we will see a time

Any chance we will see a time archtype power set in COT or something to it. One of my fav toons in COH was a Demon/Time MM was just thinking how much fun he was to play would like to see what you could if you could pull off something close to him.

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I would also like to see

I would also like to see Elemental minions at some point. Fire Imps, Earth, wind elementals, etc.

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Ooooh, it would be

Ooooh, it would be interesting to see TPP's take on elementals.

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thormaeb wrote:
thormaeb wrote:

I acknowledge that we may not have all of these by launch, but I'd like to maybe even see the "zombie" category broken up. There are very different types of undead! Maybe split undead up into Zombies, Ghosts, Vampires, and even a general Undead category that includes different types (for the necromancer who doesnt need a specialization!)

Oooooh, ghosts .... shades of the old Illusion controllers. Me likey.

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On the note of multiple kinds

On the note of multiple kinds of undead. There are also different types of origins of undead. Zombies, e.g., come in essentially two types, magic or viral/science, maybe technozombies are a third. While the origin of the zombie really doesn't change much, typical zombies can only scratch, bite, maybe puke, but there can be some differentiation.

In CoH, necromancy summoned three types of zombies, walkers, knights (awesome), and liches. These made perfect sense for that unspecialized magic necromancer @thormaeb mentioned. But if I wanted say to control viral-based zombies, grave knights, liches, and ghosts make no sense, technozombies could pull off a knight and lich, but a science one couldn't. On the same note, the third power granted by Empower Undead was life drain, which again makes no sense for a non-magic zombie.

Maybe magic and non-magic undead need their own power sets. Assuming three tiers of pet, the magic one could follow the old scheme, while a viral set could feature advanced viral types like seen in Left 4 Dead, Dead Space, or Resident Evil. (C'mon, you know you want a Tanker to control ;) )

Just brainss for thought.

PS: my flagship was a necromancer, i've been a huge fan since Diablo II.


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desviper wrote:
desviper wrote:

Maybe magic and non-magic undead need their own power sets. Assuming three tiers of pet, the magic one could follow the old scheme, while a viral set could feature advanced viral types like seen in Left 4 Dead, Dead Space, or Resident Evil. (C'mon, you know you want a Tanker to control ;) )

I don't think it really should matter mechanically whether our horde is raised via necromancy or virus. If we get some control over the looks of our pets, along with the ability to customize the look of our powers I think we could get by on just one "undead" pet set. Let the appearance and bio say what flavor of zombie you're making.

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Wouldn't a mad scientist

Wouldn't a mad scientist making zombies out of a virus that turns around summoning liches and grave knights makes no sense. Putting it in the bio kind've creates a "uhh, okay" moment for any reader.

This would be especially bad if, as in CoH, pet powersets had a built-in ranged attack. A mad scientist shooting dark blasts is pretty contre-genre.


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This is why I hope we either

This is why I hope we either get a pseudo avatar builder, a list of premade npcs(villan and hero groups ect) to choose from, or both. Sure my zombie may have the stats of the "lich" level power, but it actually looks like a dog...or zombie dog ect.

As far as differing powersets in this framework id like to have something like:
powerset A: 3 minions or normal power level and rest are buffs for them and some other stuff
powerset B: 2 minions of higher power level same stuff as before but another good buff
powerset C: 1 very powerful minion another very good buff
powerset D: 5 or more weak minion powers with fewer buffs but the powers cast quickly and recharge fast.

Any minion "skin" can be applied to any set or mybe even any individual minion power. Have 5 or 6 cast animations spanning magic, tech, or normal stuff(walkie talkie).
You would choose from a list of possible stat combos for the set, but as before any set could have any stat block and any skin (fire zombies or frost robots oor w/e)

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desviper wrote:
desviper wrote:

Wouldn't a mad scientist making zombies out of a virus that turns around summoning liches and grave knights makes no sense. Putting it in the bio kind've creates a "uhh, okay" moment for any reader.
This would be especially bad if, as in CoH, pet powersets had a built-in ranged attack. A mad scientist shooting dark blasts is pretty contre-genre.

Ahh, but the thing is, what if they didn't look like grave knights and litches? What if your token ranged attacks didn't look remotely magical? That's what I am getting at. With enough control over how our powers look and what our pets look like we don't need multiple sets of undead to fulfill both necro and viral zombies.

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^ and ^^ agreed

^ and ^^ agreed


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Again, this adds a lot of

Again, this adds a lot of work and resources for devs to implement, but how's the idea of choosing one or two of our pets' powers.

If CoT has the upgrade pet system, which I kinda hope it doesn't, it was very cumbersome even after it became AoE, the final upgrade could have an chosen power. It'd be one of three or so, choosing any power would be OP.

One thing that bummed me out was that some pets got a differentiated third pet (thugs got a pyro, soldiers got a medic, etc.), this could add some instead.

Maybe it should be limited to bottom tier pets, applying to all would get complex fast. E.g. say I have zombies, but I'm a Ringleader, pet/man and have no support, a life drain power would then be best. But if I were an Engineer, I have support powers so giving another attack is more balanced.

Example pet powers:
Zombie (bottom tier):
-strike/scratch, melee smashing/lethal
-projectile vomit, ranged toxic
-puke melee cone toxic
And one of:
-life drain, ranged negative, self heal
-blood rage, self temp: +speed +DMG + Res(all)
-stunning blow, melee smashing, stun

If CoT avoids the upgrade system, and pets get more powers as you do, at power selection the final power can be chosen.


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well, I don't think it should

well, I don't think it should avoid the upgrade system, but rather implement it differently. folowing the CoX format of 3 minions, 2 lieutenants, and 1 boss and a pair of upgrade powers it would work like this: When you purchase the upgrade power you automatically gain more powers on all your pets when summoning them, instead of applying the upgrade. One of the upgrades could further be slotted to boost the offensive abilities of the pets and the other the defensive abilities.

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Wouldn't you rather have an

Wouldn't you rather have an automatic upgrade at levels 12 and 28 than waste a powerset slot (assuming similarly tiered system)?

I don't see any advantage to having it be a separate power other than the option of having weaker pets, who would chose that?


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desviper wrote:
desviper wrote:

Wouldn't you rather have an automatic upgrade at levels 12 and 28 than waste a powerset slot (assuming similarly tiered system)?
I don't see any advantage to having it be a separate power other than the option of having weaker pets, who would chose that?

Well, part of it is to fill out the set. What else would you put in the pet set to replace an upgrade power? Another part for me is I want the pet set to not only be the ability to summon minions, but to make my minions better through investing in the power set. In terms of the specific upgrade powers I proposed, they are more than just adding a AoE attack to the summoned creatures, they also would let you increase their defense, resistance, regeneration, buff/debuff values, etc. as you see fit.

If all they did was just add powers to the minions I could be persuaded to making the upgrades just pop up as you level. Hell, I'd probably spread out the gained powers across more than just 2 level bumps even. That would still leave us with what else to put in the set? In CoH MM had 3 summon powers, 2 upgrade powers, 3 direct attack powers, and one "other" power. I don't know if we will have 9 powers in a set again, but the number of powers would be the same across all power sets. so if you were eliminating upgrades from the set, how would you pad it out?

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Following a CoH format, which

Following a CoH format, which may not be appropriate: Of 9 Powers I would have
3 Main Pet Summon Powers: tier 1,2,3 as per CoH,
1 Special Pet Summon (Gang War, Hell on Earth, Soul Extraction)
If pet summon makes little sense ( as it ninja's for example), An short term buff could be used (like Serum)
3 Attacks seemed right, another could be argued, but if you want more attacks you can take one a Ringleader or Taskmaster

Here each Class could be separated:

Engineer: 2 of
An Additional Direct Attack, I argue another makes sense here since Engineers are low on attacks, Pools may be a substitute.
A Special Pet Attack, Maybe a suicide Zombie/soldier/thug, a special Ninja move, or a special demon spell. (Maybe this could be in the all-class section)
A Pet-Directed Attack, rather than the Master shooting something at the enemy, It could be a pet-directed one, Zombie Lich for example could be told to execute the foe hold/immob at a more tactically sound time. Same goes for LRM rocket of the Soldier Commando.

Taskmaster (Pet/Assa): 2 of
A Pet Heal: Since Taskmasters are low on support, this could balance them some, and it should be superior to a pool heal. (may or may not be pets only)
An AoE Heal: Same as "a pet heal" above, but heals multiple.
A Pet Buff: Not an upgrade, but a simple +DMG, +DEF kind of thing. (Maybe Single target, maybe not pet only)

Ringleader (Pet/Mani): 2 of
A Pet Heal: same as above, but maybe melee range and stronger.
A PBAoE heal, same as above but PBAoE
A PBAoE Buff, same as above but PBAoE

This allows the Classes to be more specific. I don't really have a big problem with adding more attacks, but the above fleshes it out a little. To tip the hat, this did take a little time (5-10 min)

Edit:
Example cause I feel like it.
A Necromancy Engineer
1: Dark attack (attack)
2: Zombies (Tier 3)
3: Dark blast (attack)
4: Life Siphon (attack)
5: Grave Knights (tier 2)
6: Dark Explosion (suicide pet)
7: Dark Fire ball (Attack)
8: Raise Undead (special summon)
9: Lich (tier 1)


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I see how you made each

I see how you made each specification separate. That was good for stopping a speck from getting too much of something, but should the power sets be different for each spec? The other thing I would note is most players of MM in CoX considered the attack powers not worth taking and skipped them. most people would be against addign in more direct attacks when they wanted them out of the set to begin with.

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Altering a primary (class)

Altering a primary (class) pet powerset so that its power list depends on the secondary (spec) would seem to create issues with the tentative plan to allow a switch of secondaries through some type of respec. If build switching also permits builds with different secondaries to coexist on the same character, the on-the-fly swap of builds must handle the extra complexity as well. Certainly it could be worked around with extra effort, but so far I'd favor syntaxerror's version as cleaner to implement, plus the customization of the pets' offense/defense is an attractive idea.

Of course the whole discussion assumes similar powerset structuring (power count, pet balance, etc) to CoH. Would I like the buff from getting 2 more powers than a CoH mastermind had? Sure, but realistically I am forced to consider the effects on balance between pet and non-pet primaries, and a significant buff to pet powersets demands a matching buff elsewhere, unless we first demonstrate that pet powersets are weak to begin with. I didn't see evidence of that in CoH...though there were certain situations where MMs were abnormally disadvantaged and could have used some adjustment targeted to fit those cases (incarnate trials with lots of stealthing/speeding or enemy AoEs).

To a certain extent, the 2 upgrade powers built into the CoH pet framework kept the mastermind from being too powerful - the pets essentially cost 5 powers and thus safely balanced to provide a large part of the MM's offense and defense. If the upgrades were inherent for the pets once the player reached certain levels, only 3 powers (the pet summons) would be needed to deliver the entire pet power arsenal, which would likely make those the 3 best powers in the game (again, using CoH pet effectiveness as our baseline). Pet primary powersets with fully upgraded pets and 6 additional full-strength primary powers of their own seem rather unbalanced versus other primaries, unless either the pets or those 6 powers are weakened below the CoH baseline (both disappointing options, I think). Thus I'd prefer something closer to the CoH scheme of 5 powers devoted to (fairly powerful) pets, and 4 others (attacks / extra summon / heal / buff / control) of modest strength for the player character to use at will.

Starting with the CoH MM power baseline, improved pet controls/AI is the first change I'd make if I could, and syntaxerror's idea is second on the list. Appearance customization is separate and equally valuable.

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syntaxerror37 wrote:
syntaxerror37 wrote:

I see how you made each specification separate. That was good for stopping a speck from getting too much of something, but should the power sets be different for each spec? The other thing I would note issues most players of MM in CoX considered the attack powers not worth taking and skipped them. most people would be against addign in more direct attacks when they wanted them out of the set to begin with.

Maybe I'm a bad MM but I took the attacks, and used them well. And I'm under the impression that power sets will be different in each specification, it's needed for balance.

To reply to ^, MMs were the squishiest archetype in the game, it was very easy to get in over your head and womped by even bosses. Hopefully CoT will have smarter AI and the enemies will know to attack others than quote "PunchFace in front of him", this allows for beefing up of squishier classes, since range may not be the safety v it used to be.


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The power base values would

The power base values would most likely have to be different, and perhaps the bass offensive/defensive abilities of the pets as well. I don't argue that, but I don't see why you would want or need to make the primary different for each spec. At the very least it will add more time in development to Pet sets. Also, as mentioned by Scott Jackson, it would make spec swapping more difficult to implement

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What's spec-swapping, I was

What's spec-swapping, I was under the impression Specifications were set at character creation, that they worked like Archetypes.

In CoH, many sets were different for each archetype, like Dark Blast , Kinetic Melee , and Energy Melee (, and All Power Pools )

This was to make each set relevant to its Archetype, to mirror in CoT, each set should be optimized (or even radically different) for each Class/Specification.


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Doctor Tyche has mentioned

Doctor Tyche has mentioned the possibility of changing spec (the secondary powerset) during a respec.

In CoH, this was not allowed; it would equate to changing from Corruptor - Dark Blast / Traps to Corruptor - Dark Blast / Kinetics (same AT).
In CoT, the character would still be in the same cell of the class/spec chart but the selected secondary powerset could change from Traps to Kinetics.

If taken further, even the secondary category (spec column in the chart) could be respec'd. The primary category (class row) would remain the same.

In CoH, this was not allowed; it would equate to changing from a Corruptor to a Blaster (different AT, but same primary category - ranged blast).
In CoT, the character would shift along the "ranged" class row in the CoT chart, such that the secondary can change from Support - Traps to Manipulation - Energy Manip.

Will either of these be implemented in CoT? Don't know, I wasn't clear on which model Doctor Tyche was considering, but simply wanted to point out the potential interaction/conflict if secondaries were designed to affect the power list of the primary.

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Sounds like a great idea!

Sounds like a great idea!

In that scenario, I'd change my answer to: 3 main pet summons, 1 unique pet summon/buff, 3 main attacks, 1 pet heal (an MM that can't heal his pets is not going to fair well), and 1 direct or pet attack.
The last one would be tailored to each pet set.
Note:"pet heal" refers to something like Repair for the Robotics set, but maybe it should be allowed to heal PCs too, I don't see why not.


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The advantage to making the

The advantage to making the heal pet-only is you can make it "broken" with the limit that it can only be applied to a master's pets. For instance, it could be a 100% heal (like Repair was), have a small endurance cost relative to its healing, or an AoE heal with an abnormally high base heal value. An engineer spec may wish to skip it if their support set has enough healing, but it would also be a great fall back for the ones who's support set lacks healing (such as Force Field and Trick arrow from CoH). I could get behind something like this.

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Wynd Master wrote:
Wynd Master wrote:

Thugs must have my thugs can't get caught getting my hands dirty.

I can't overstate the fun gameplay in being a support MM -- /traps was a wonderful secondary, and I never ever took a (directly) offensive power in Thugs, Robots, anything else.

I never ever, ever saw my MM's dual pistols or whatever a Thugs had (or big gun??? I don't even know.) Didn't even bother picking one in the Icon.

The gameplay was all about the pets tackling and dealing with the monsters, a big boss or a huge mob. I would support, heal, re-cast, throw down traps, etc. That was the ungodly fun gameplay.

Other games' pets are little more than weak DOTs while you are expected to go all Rambo action-MMO on the monsters' butts. Ummm...no. Some may want to play that way, but not me. I remember debates on the forum about "should you pick a primary offense power?" meaning one or more of your 3 gun/shooty/blasty powers.

So many other games, even Champions, which is the closest thing to a true MM (though pale in comparison) presumes the character does the lion's share of damage, the pets being speed bump/very weak DOTs. Even taking many pets I still do about 80% of the damage, or stand there a long time. Since their AI is silly (the monsters just wail on me, end of story) I just stand there with block up the whole fight anyway.

No other game "gets it" for pets. It's about managing your posse while they do the fighting.

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I'll say it flat-out: A

I'll say it flat-out: A correctly-designed pets class, you are the support for the pets, not the pets as support for you.

This design seems to support all possibilities -- you fight powerfully with pets helping, or your pets fight while you support in one of a crazy variety of ways. Just make sure I am never expected to focus attention on the monster directly any more than a classic healer is.

Ya I like that -- I wanna focus on my pets during a fight the way a healer focuses on their teammates.

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Gorgon wrote:
Gorgon wrote:

I wanna focus on my pets during a fight the way a healer focuses on their teammates.

It would be simply adorable if the aggro the pets would obtain and hold reflected this approach.

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Gorgon wrote:
Gorgon wrote:

I'll say it flat-out: A correctly-designed pets class, you are the support for the pets, not the pets as support for you.
This design seems to support all possibilities -- you fight powerfully with pets helping, or your pets fight while you support in one of a crazy variety of ways. Just make sure I am never expected to focus attention on the monster directly any more than a classic healer is.
Ya I like that -- I wanna focus on my pets during a fight the way a healer focuses on their teammates.

Yes! Yes! This!

Gauntlet was Bots/Dark. Bots stayed at range, if they took damage one pull PBA0E heal and they blazed away. PBAoE stealth kept them out of unnecessary trouble. A very useful combo.

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Gorgon wrote:
Gorgon wrote:

... I wanna focus on my pets during a fight the way a healer focuses on their teammates.

Hmm... what If you could choose different Specifications for pets? So if you want to be a Blapper you can, and the Pet would Heal you and Buff you also. :)

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The more pet customization

The more pet customization the better. One of the unfortunate issues with Champions was there was very little of this in effect for any power, and thus for pets in particular.

I view that as a separate issue from how one plays with the pets. The blapper with pet support you mention is the "standard" model in most games, where the game makers are deciding the "way to play a pet class" is to attack like any other class with the pet supporting you-while-u-attack.

I speak of the City of Heroes model where you, the MM, did not do attacking per se but your pets did. Please don't fall into the trap every single other game except CoH did where they decide you are just another character attacking with your pets supporting you.

If you are unaware of this playstyle, with my thugs/traps MM, I would typically play like this:

1. Set to bodyguard mode (defensive/follow) so all damage to me is divided between me and them (1 share for each alive pet "in range" and 2 shares for me. Hence with all 6 pets, they take 6 and I take 2, for an approximately scrapper-like 75% damage reduction. Note I must forgo attacking directly.

2. Cast Seeker drones to take the alpha, or just run in (slowly, so pets stay in range of me so I can take advantage of bodyguard mode)

3. Monster attacks me, so thus pets attack it.

4. Drop triage (the little healing pyramid), poison trap (hold), acid mortar, caltrops, whenever they recycle.

5. When not doing 4, monitor pet health (and my own) with a pet heal and/or the mediocre power pool heal-other.

I guess it would be easy to fubar a pet implementation without realizing it. But the biggest thing is to not assume pets are little DOTs attached to you-doing-attacking. Pet management during battle WITHOUT you fighting IS the real game for a true mastermind class.

Remember: I never chose a primary direct attack (e.g. Thugs got pistols, and I never took pistols, dual wield, or empty clips, the three shooting powers). Never.

I. Do. Not. Direct. Attack.

This isn't to say I didn't pull out the Nightwand or Nemesis Staff to tag a runner once in awhile. But that was the exception, not the rule.

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If I understand the (good)

If I understand the (good) design of pets, you pick specifications as with "normal" powers, where your pets do a little extra DPS over "normal", or some debuffing with attacks, and similar effects for buffing friends or healing. That's fine, but your playstyle model should not force MMs to be:

"...and then the Operator runs in and starts blazing away, doing 80% of the damage herself while the pets doink away, doing whatever their specs dictate."

A blaster (or scrapper, or tanker, or anything else) with some pet support is just that -- a blaster or scrapper or tanker, in playstyle. An MM is something completely different.

My pets and traps did damage, but I never directly did ever. It's not about hiding from aggro, either.

So to paraphrase the above:

"...and then the Operator runs in, guns stored safely at the bottom of their backpack where they never see the light of day, and rather starts blazing away, healing a pet here, dropping a trap there, placing an AOE slow over thataway (caltrops, or dark tarpatch or whatever it was called) and doing 0% of the damage themselves."

ETA: Yes I know caltrops and many other effecty-powers including holds/immob. also did minor damage, but that wasn't why you used them so I don't really consider that "direct" damage from an MM.

I'm not saying people couldn't play your blapper-style, which was the CoH intention with MMs, to be honest. You were supposed to blaze away with your pistols, maybe occasionally attending to pets, but otherwise being a second-rate blaster.

That's fine, but that should not be the only playstyle because that is how pets play in ever single other MMO.

"Logical, It's Obviously How To Do It" Game design (including CoH): 80% blaster, 20% pet tending

Emergent superfun gameplay on CoH that was unexpected: 0% blaster, 100% pet tending

Here I include the secondary powers like caltrops, triage, or from dark miasma, slow and debuf attacks, to be part of pet tending. Yes a breakdown would be more like 0% blaster, 50% pet tending, 50% secondary stuff (heal, debuff, buff, aoe slow, etc.)

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I would like to see a way to

I would like to see a way to let the player decide how much Pet Tending they want.
For some builds, i'd probably go for:
100% pet tending
0% attacking

On other builds which are more for larger teams:
20% pet tending, 20% team support
60% attacking

If i'm allowed to choose my play-style, all the better. :)

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I definitely agree, the more

I definitely agree, the more customization, and the more people can choose their own playstyle the better!

I definitely think there should be more of a pet-tending play style, which, as mentioned previously, could simply emerge from a set similar to what CoX had. However, why not take that a step further? Add a set or two in which the Operator's primary power set has NO attacks. I'm not saying everyone has to play that way, just don't pick that power set if you are not prepared to let your pets take center stage. In the place of the primary attacks, add in more pet-centered buffs or even more pets. So that by forgoing any ability to deal damage directly, maybe now there are 4 tiers of pets instead of just 3. Heck, make your own little army!

On the other side of that, throw in a set or two in which at level one you get exactly one pet, and then the rest of your abilities focus on you (or perhaps one or two for pet buffing). That could turn into a built-in sidekick or one lonely but loyal mercenary. Maybe your ONE pet is a beast and you are HIS sidekick! Or, maybe you are basically a brute with a sidekick giving you buffs once in a while.

All I'm saying, is pretty much what others have been saying, the more options, the more people will be able to settle into EXACTLY what they want to be playing. Not all Operators have to be built the same or even to have the same type of potential. Variable number of minions would be an awesome way to give people more customization (and it never hurts to allow some degree of minion customization such as at certain levels getting to actually pick which powers your minions will take!)

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Personally, for me, I like

Personally, for me, I like to fight beside my pets/summons/random flunkies. My main was a merc/pain and when I wasn't healing or what have you, I was firing away. It felt...good to be standing in a line with my soldiers filling a target full of lead. Or swinging a fiery whip as my demonic minions layed waste. You know the drill.

But the one thing that I LOVED and have not been able to replicate since then is the fact that with an MM, you were not the main source of damage. You could, ostensibly, match your boss minion in damage, but that was one of six. You were support. Your damage was one tick among a group, but your healing/buffing/debuffing was the deciding factor. It was team play solo. And yes, if you wanted you could completely forgo personal attacks in favor of JUST supporting. I haven't seen it done anywhere else and believe me, I've looked. Warhammer had something similar, close to a fifty fifty split specced right with the white Lion, but that was just one minion, and you still did most of the damage. Star Trek has carriers, but those are both hard to get and still depend heavily on you for damage. EVE has droneships or motherships which are close, but my patience for spreadsheets/trolling as hard as possible the game isn't great.

I also miss the sheer VARIETY of minions. Even when everything dealt damage, it did it in its own way and at least one minion was unique. Zombies had a caster, Mercs had a medic and a guy who was more or less half of the assault rifle powerset with a rocket launcher tossed in for good measure, demons covered EVERY element on the table, had a healer, and had a damage dealer/CCer. Thugs were extremely unique, relying on leadership bonus's to beef up weak minions and a melee boss. ...oh, I've made myself sad....

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Palladiamors wrote:
Palladiamors wrote:

Personally, for me, I like to fight beside my pets/summons/random flunkies. My main was a merc/pain and when I wasn't healing or what have you, I was firing away. It felt...good to be standing in a line with my soldiers filling a target full of lead. Or swinging a fiery whip as my demonic minions layed waste. You know the drill.

That's how I played my bots/FF MM. as well as blasting away, the stun effect on Photon Grenade was quite useful for lowering incoming damage. Thats one of the reasons I'm looking forward to the Taskmaster and Ringleader specifications. They should make the "fights by their pets" options even better.

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In a number of games (Star

In a number of games (Star Wars: The Old Republic online, for one obvious example) the "pet", i.e. companion, you can turn on or off all any powers you like so they won't use them. You could turn off "robot punch" for a primarily-ranged pet (especially if they shoot point blank anyway).

A better option would be slightly better AI where it only punched if it happened to be within punching range, and did not run up (unless it was a melee type like the Thugs bruiser).

Even some kind of "prefer ranged/prefer melee" toggle soft preference that boosted somewhat the natural AI's tendencies (which hopefully would be better as per above) would also be interesting.

Oooh I just had a wistful moment for my upgraded tier 1 zombies -- when their barf quasi-alpha went off, all 3 on one thing, it was a beautiful sight.

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I remember discussions in the

I remember discussions in the early days of MMs, "Do you even take a primary attack?" As if you were gimped without. Nobody knew what was going on back then and we were still figuring things out.

Not saying you can't play a root-toot-tootin' shooter with pet support. But that's basically the design in every single other MMORPG with pets out there. No, CoH's difference was the ability to play as the pet group itself. That's the idea I want to get across.

Still waiting for the game that does away with the MM's body itself so you are just abstractly the pets running around. Maybe that will clear up the concept even more.

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Gorgon wrote:
Gorgon wrote:

Not saying you can't play a root-toot-tootin' shooter with pet support. But that's basically the design in every single other MMORPG with pets out there. No, CoH's difference was the ability to play as the pet group itself. That's the idea I want to get across.

I think we are all MM fans here, so we do understand what you're saying. CoH nailed the pet class. If you wanted the same level of pet control outside of CoH you would have to load up an RTS. But one of the things I loved about CoH was how viable it was to play the same class differently. You could play your Thugs\traps without the personal attacks and I could play my Bots/FF with the attacks. Both styles of play were valid choices.

Quote:

Still waiting for the game that does away with the MM's body itself so you are just abstractly the pets running around. Maybe that will clear up the concept even more.

I don't know if that would fit an MMO, Not saying it's impossible, but would take a lot of work to make it click.

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syntaxerror37 wrote:
syntaxerror37 wrote:

Quote:
Still waiting for the game that does away with the MM's body itself so you are just abstractly the pets running around. Maybe that will clear up the concept even more.

I don't know if that would fit an MMO, Not saying it's impossible, but would take a lot of work to make it click.

It is an interesting idea, but you'd have to deal with some very fundamental questions like "How do you deal with character death?" Are your HPs based on a summation of all the pets together or do you die when a certain single pet gets killed? "How do you actually move around as a group?" Are all the pets geared to flock around one primary pet or could each pet independently move miles away from each other? Where does the line between "one player running with a group of generic minion-like pets" and "one player effectively running multiple independent character-like pets at the same time" begin or end?

I'm not against the idea in principle - I'm just not sure how you'd handle all the problems you'd be faced with this.

CoH player from April 25, 2004 to November 30, 2012

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Whatever such a concept /

Whatever such a concept / class / AT would be called, it would not be mastermind. Both mastermind and operator suggest a leader or guide that directs and/or oversees the group's actions. The "abstractly the pets running around" idea strikes me more like the classic D&D games, where the player is controlling the actions of several individuals but has no direct presence in the game. That raises the fundamental question, who or what is the character?

In other words: what Lothic said.

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I don't think the issues are

The no-MM-body idea (which I am sure could work) is really presented here as a thought experiment to demonstrate the playstyle orienting around the pets rather than the MM. The MM can't do any rootin-tootin-shootin if there's no MM body.

"Oh, it's about the pets. Got it." :)

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