Friday, October 16 2009

Undeath From Above

As I learn more about powers and combat styles in Champions Online, I find that many of the choices I made early on are sub-optimal. You can retcon your powers for a price, and the price isn’t outrageous at early levels, but since I’m still learning, I want to stick with my choices as long as possible, and try to make them work.

Case in point, The Cybernetic Librarian has mostly Sorcery powers, with two early slots spent on healing and shielding to avoid the damage that she was taking at low levels. Her major single-target ranged attack takes a lot of time to charge up, likewise her ranged AoE damage/stun. But she still gets into trouble when a large group of henchmen are spread out and plinking away, so I picked up a power that summons three zombies who freely attack anyone attacking you (March of the Dead).

Turns out the single-target attack (Eldritch Blast) has long range, and when fully charged can take out a henchman in one shot, from beyond his aggro range. The AoE stun (Condemn) is also slow to charge, and only affects things very close to the target, but if you attack from outside aggro range, everything moves towards you to attack, and they tend to bunch up enough to allow stunning several. And the zombies? They get summoned at her current location, and if she’s flying over a group of villains high enough to avoid aggro, they drop to the ground as soon as they appear.

They take some falling damage, but they don’t start fighting until something attacks her, so the villains ignore them. So the new strategy for outdoor fights is to fly right over a group, airdrop the zombies, one-shot a henchman, then move into range and gather them up for a stun. The 28 seconds that the zombies last provides plenty of damage and distraction.