Home > Champions Online > Respec(t) for the launch

Respec(t) for the launch


I completely forgot to take screenshots of the Head Start event, but it was rather bland anyway. I was having great fun with the game, but the alien invasions were basically a drop of some mobs every 1.5 hours and they were zerged within minutes. If you were on the other side of the zone, the event would be over before you got there. The game played well during head start and while there are plenty of bugs none that I encountered were game-breaking.

Launch was smooth and there was no need for any big emergency maintenance till Sept 3rd. Cryptic did drop a bomb in the form of a patch that great changed the apparant effectiveness of passive defenses just has the head start ended. The offical forums exploded with complaints. Personally, I have experienced almost no trouble at all and I think many people just had bad builds. However, we cannot all be expected to spend hours with the champion builder. Cryptic could have prevented a great deal of whining by just giving everyone a free respec immediately. Luckily, it did happen. It is not like characters have been really estabilished by this point in time. Also, respeccing is extremely costly. Going one step back is a serious decision, two or three can become unpayable.  Either they really do not want us to respec while leveling up or someone put a decimal point wrong.

I can understand that Cryptic does not want people to completely change their characters around.  Today I’m a Ninja, but tomorrow a comboy and the next week, I shall be an astronaut. However, in a game with this much freedom, there is the freedom to completely screw up. That said, not every build should be viable. If someone wants to make a retarded build, he should expect to perform like a retard as well.

Cryptic will have to find a balance that prevents everyone from switching to the Flavor-of-the-Month build continuously, while allowing people to tweak their build. The last in-first out respec stack is a good start (if you buy five items and you want to change the second one, you have to remove the last four items), but I honestly cannot see why it includes everything. A hero is defined by powers and those should be the most expensive. Stats are tied to powers, so those should be cheaper. Advantages are added flavor to the powers, but they can also greatly change how these work. Advantages are powerful, but these are often worded badly so they should be really cheap for now. An example of a badly worded Advantage is Crippling Challenge, which is available on most basic damaging abilities (e.g. lash, beatdown etc.). It reads like a taunt, but a sideffect is that it negates blocking for a short while on the target. And that makes it great for pvp.

In conclusion, Champions is great fun, but the respec system needs to be respecced.

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