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Jordan’s Teaming Guide

Last Modified: May 20, 2007

About Teams

You will need to team at some point no matter what you do. Teams can be fun and interesting plus earn great exp or they can be a waste of your time and cause you to scream obscenities at your computer making people nearby questions your sanity. There are steps you can take to reduce the latter variety.

As of issue 4 (the fourth version of the game), you can enter a custom message that people seeking team members will see next to your name. Use this feature to weed out teams you don’t want. For example, “no blind invites” means you will automatically refuse anyone who sends you a team invite without sending a tell first (a tell is a private message from one player to another which can be done to and from anywhere in the game at any time as long as you’re both online and on the same server (and one of you isn’t ignoring the other)).

The important things you need to know when joining a team are: what are they doing (hunting/missions/TF), what level are they (did some shmuck at level 10 invite you when you’re level 14?), and what types are the team members (You will quickly learn that certain types of missions require certain types of players).

Whenever you have a good team experience, add the key players to your friends list These would be people who play well, have a good personality, and don’t worry about a lot of questions you might have about the game.

When someone on your friend list is online, you will receive a notification so you can message them if you need help/want company. Right now, you won’t know anything about the player other than you liked them enough to add to your friends list because CoH doesn’t allow you to attach comments to friends’ names (*hint hint) which is particularly a problem for the casual gamer, but it’s still better than nothing.

One tip for being invited to higher level teams (where everyone is higher level than you), hang out in a zone where the enemies are all at your level or higher, select “looking for any” in the team window and just do some hunting until a local team decided they need another scrapper. Team leaders will often look for people in the same zone so the team doesn’t have to take much time to gather together.

Don’t bother forming a team yourself until you’ve been in a few so you can see how it works. Also get a good idea of how they types work together and their roles so you know who to kick when necessary. It’s surprising how often you’ll get a rogue player who won’t listen to the rest of the team and constantly gets you all killed. To avoid this, don’t be afraid to kick a player from your team and know what everyone should be doing (and make sure they know it too).

Having said that…

ARCHETYPE ROLES

*Tanker – Meat shield. They take the hits and make sure that everyone in a mob is paying attention to them (they hold the aggro (aggression/attention) of all the enemies). They have enough hitpoints to survive most battles alone, but not enough damage to always kill everything before they themselves die. Essential for battles with large numbers of enemies at and above your level.

*Blaster – Damage dealers. These are snipers of the game. It’s not glorious, but their job is to hide and fire, not draw attention and to NEVER jump into the middle of a mob. They need to stay away from the action and unload lethal damage from afar.

NOTE: A blaster will pretty much die (and often does) as soon as an enemy notices them, but most blasters I’ve played with don’t seem to know this. Of all types in the game, I’ve seen blasters die more often than all other characters in a team because they fire on a crowd before the tank has their attention or because they won’t stop firing and run when they start to lose significant life.

Blasters almost always throw the team off balance so be careful about the blasters you team with. They really can be useful if played correctly, but I very rarely saw that happen.

*Controller – Crowd Control. Controllers are one of the two types that require teams (early on anyway) because they are so squishy (low on hit points). They do crowd control and with a strong controller, you don’t even need a tank because the enemies will be frozen, confused, held or whatever. They have almost no hit points and should never focus on offense until later levels or when the crowd is firmly under control or they have the ability to summon pets. Controllers are great support characters and will often take teleport, resurrect, healing, or other team powers.

*Defender – Healers. I really like defenders because they have a good balance of attack/control and healing/support powers. They are very versatile, but for the most part, they are your healers. A team depends on the defenders to keep healing, passing out ispirations (too large a topic to explain here), and debuffing (weakening) enemies so that the rest of the crew can focus on their job instead of watching their health and trying to stay alive. A really good defender knows to only use their attacks when soloing or when the team is fighting weak mobs. During tough battles, the defender should only be doing support actions so they don’t draw aggro and die.

*Scrapper – High damage, medium hit points. The scrapper’s primary job during a team battle is to add damage to what the tank does and take out the problem enemies quickly. They will often focus on bosses because of their ability to take enemies far above their level and are also important for protecting the squishies (low hit point characters) from enemies that for whatever reason aren’t paying attention to the tank (or being held by the controller).

This is what I chose for solo play. The primary advantage to the scrapper for solo over the tank is that tanks focus on killing many enemies from one or so levels above them to a level or two below. Scrappers can often take on enemies 4 or more levels higher than themselves as long as there aren’t too many. As you get higher level, you will begin to manage groups of enemies at or above your level instead of just one or two at a time.

*Peacebringer/Warshade – Flying Squiddy Blasters. Basically they’re blasters with flight and a bunch of nifty, unique powers from level 1. You can only play them if you get a character to level 50 first so you can USUALLY assume that anyone playing one of these knows how to play the game.

However, in my experience, PB and WS players are one of two types: one of the most patient and friendliest team players in the game, or dumb as a post. Treat them as a blaster as far as team play goes.

For the most part, it’s just easier to assume that whoever has the star (the yellow star next to name signifies that character is the current team leader) is in command. When there’s indecision about where to go or what to do, let them choose and support their decision with the rest of the group. There’s nothing worse than a group full of “leaders”.

However, if the leader makes enough bad decisions, you can “kick” them by having all members quit from the team and reform with a new leader leaving the dummy out (but this is not common). Much more common is where everyone chooses a new leader and the previous takes a back seat.

The most annoying people in the game will constantly flood the team chat channel during or out of battle with meaningless crap. One member I was with hit all the auto talk buttons “HELP”, “WAIT”, “READY”, etc. all the time. Others would write talk dirty or act otherwise very juvenile. Be an adult. Even if playing in character (where you talk and act as if you ARE the character you created), treat others with respect and you will get respect in return.

Pay attention to the team chat window. People (other than the annoying ones I just mentioned) who take the time to type something do so for a reason. There are times you will want to kick back and just chat about things, but for the most part, you should be paying attention to what your team is saying.

If you have something to say that should be private, send a tell to that player. Don’t complain about your “worthless leader” or the like in the main team window.

Try not to chat during battles unless the battle is very much under control or your team is just in that kind of mode. Sometimes you will get into a group that’s just out to have fun and doesn’t care about debt (negative experience points you receive as punishment for losing battles (but not before level 5)). These will be the best experiences you will have in the game (another reason it’s important to add great people to your friends list (and why CoH should have a feature for adding comments to people in your friends list (>>>>>>HINT HINT<<<<<).

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  1. Many defender fans will bristle at the idea that defenders are only healers. They’d argue that only Empaths are really healers (and even that’s short-changing empaths a bit). All other defenders are more focused on mitigating damage rather than healing it. Force fielders, for instance, prevent damage from hitting the team, rather than trying to heal damage when it’s already done. And even though most defender powersets have heals, they have many, many other tools for mitigating damage and for helping the team take down bad guys quickly. Defenders are really the the ones who use their powers to protect the team from harm, the ones who… well… defend.

    Don’t forget that Defenders have a side job as blaster. It can be awful fun to play an Offender — a defender who uses his buff/debuff powers to maximize his own damage.

    • Wow. I really need to update this guide. It’s clearly very, very out of date 😛

      Notice at the bottom where it’s harassing the devs to add a “why I added this friend” feature. They added that several issues ago (and I like to think they added it because of me 🙂

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