City Of Heroes: The Good, The Bad and The Occasionally Hopeless.


I could talk about how cool the double xp weekend was, but I won’t. We already know it was cool. Anyone who was there knows it was cool. The servers where packed, and there was heroes and villains everywhere you looked. Anyone who was there knows that.

For me, the double xp weekend, and the weeks following, once again made me notice an intriguing fact. Not everyone is suited for every single AT in the game. Okay, so it might seem obvious, but it’s not to me. I haven’t had much trouble adapting from one AT to the other. It’s half the reason I don’t have a character at level fifty yet! And yet, I’ve seen more than once that the very good teammate today, might be the cause of the team wipe tomorrow.

Just the other day, I teamed up with a long time, in game friend. He was playing his Stalker. Looking through my list, it turned out that my only toon in that level was also my Stalker. Now, I admit, he didn’t pick and easy build to play with, and true, he was in need of a respec very badly – but even with these problems I’ve usually never had that much of a problem playing anything. He did much better once we teamed, and I encouraged him to use what a VG member calls the ‘run away like a little girl’ tactic. It works wonderfully.

I have a SG mate that is simply amazing as a Scrapper. So much so that, despite being the newest person to the game, he’s the first of the core five with a level fifty. He rocks with his Illusion Controller as well, tromping on pretty much everything in his path. The one he has a problem with? A Blaster. Having teamed just recently with said Blaster, he does seem to be getting the hang of it, but it’s easy to see that he’s not a ‘natural’ Blaster type. He’d much rather run in and stomp everything to bits, easy with a Scrapper, or a Tank – not so much so with some of the others.

Perhaps part of that is because certain AT’s are the ‘easy’ one’s, in a manner of speaking. You don’t need a team for a Scrapper, or a Tank for that matter. Even some builds for Controllers or Defenders can do quite well on their own. Same on the Villains side. Masterminds are a team in and of themselves, and in fact can be a bit annoying to other team members, even unintentionally. Brutes tend to just roar through missions. Stalkers can solo, but not so well, same with Dom’s and most Corrupter’s. Maybe it’s the ability to solo that makes something easy, combined with simple to use powers (which does tend to leave Masterminds out of the mix).

It’s very hard to play just about any Scrapper, Brute or Tank ‘wrong’. Yes, I have seen them played wrong, I didn’t say impossible, but it’s still hard. You have to be pretty stubbornly dense to mess playing those up. Scrapper and Brute? Just attack. I mean, how hard is that to figure out? Okay, so on teams you need to be careful, but their main purpose is to squish things. Even tanks can hardly go wrong as long as they are the first one’s in, last one’s out and at least attempt to hold aggro in groups.

Honestly, I just find it a bit baffling that people have issues with this stuff. But then, it’s a well known fact I’m a bit of an odd duck. Fortunetly, I’m not alone. I have run into others that can slip into anyone’s costume and do just fine. And my Stalker friend is one of those persistent people who will play until he knows more of what he is doing. Asking advice doesn’t hurt either.

Maybe in the end it’s a matter of what we started by playing. If most people started in the ‘easy to use’ AT section, which I know I often recommend, and then moved on from there, it might be hard for some people to change their mindsets a bit. After all, going from a Scrapper to, say, a Controller is a pretty large change in methods – you can’t just blast away with powers and expect to live for long with a Controller!

In the end, it doesn’t really matter. There’s always going to be the good, bad and ugly in the player base. There’s always going to be that troublesome teammate, or odd SG member. Still, the next time you’re playing, ask yourself, am I good at this? And then answer yourself seriously. I do quite often, and still refer back to my SG and teammates to be sure I’m holding down my role correctly. And, at the root of it all, that just might be the first step to being ‘good’ at anything. -@Mialiah ([email protected])

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