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Global Agenda: PvP Tanking

Always keep an eye on the healers.

Global Agenda is a combination of MMO and Shooter and it shows in the survivability of the classes. The Assault is the only class capable of tanking, but its ability to withstand fire relative to other classes is a lot less than, say, the survivability of a protection warrior compared to a mage in World of Warcraft.

Basics

Tanks have to do two things: ensure that the opponent attacks them and be able to survive those attacks. Computer controlled opponents typically attack the person that is doing the most perceived damage to them. Of course, if tanks did the most damage and were able to survive best, then no one would play a pure dps class. Therefore tank attacks do more perceived damage (called ‘threat’ or ‘hate’) than actual damage. Human opponents are, of course, not fooled by this trick. It takes more effort to convince them that they should attack the tank and not the easier target behind him.

Building

A great planning tool for skill point allocation can be found at hexagenda. Changing skill points costs nothing in GA (contrary to most MMO’s), which invites experimentation. Although it is tempting to start with the Tank tree, the first points should really be spent in the Balanced tree. It takes a decent amount of skill points to become tanky at all and the levels to get there should be enjoyable als well. Jet Pack Power and Power Pool Increase greatly increase mobility and sustained fire rate, so I would always take those before going into the tank tree. Super Tank is the final skill in the Tank tree and it is something to strive to get as well, since it removes the movement penalty on shield use. Where points are to be spent, is mostly a matter of personal preference. However, I would always go for passive protections above shields. A decent example build is this.

Which weapons to take depends on the map, but in case of doubt: take the mini-gun. It can be fired for a long while, it pushes people back and it does additional damage to Robotic constructs. The inferno rocket is a good choice as well: while it is power hungry, it does massive AOE damage and it leaves a fire DOT on anyone hit.

Off-hands are matter of personal choice and the map. I always take the EMP-grenade to stun mechanical constructs and the Ranged shield, because these are useful in about any match. Perfect Target can be quite powerful, or a complete waste of time (see tactics, below). The knock-away grenade is pretty effective on some maps, especially near deep drops.

Tactics

All maps in GA are about getting control of a circle. Being in the circle makes one a target and even if a player is not directly targeted, AOE damage will still hit him. Therefore standing in the circle is by far the easiest way to build threat in PvP. If the opponent wants to take control of it, they have to go through you first!

Protecting healers is another and it has the bonus effect of getting healed (most of the time). As said before, the Assault’s survivability is not that much higher than for other classes. However, healing  is potent in GA. An Assault that is getting healed by two medics is nearly unstoppable as long as the medics are alive. The Assault can protect Medics and other squishies fairly well from direct fire by standing in front of them, or pushing opponents away with the Mini-Gun. However, snipers and long range turrets (e.g. Rocket Turrets) should be dealt with by Recons.

It's OK to find a safe spot while the point is under your team's control, but be ready to jump back on it at any moment.

While most opponents in PvP are human, the Robotics class creates turrets and drones that are computer controlled. The Perfect Target off-hand ability forces these to attack the Assault, while the Assault is invulnerable. The Assault cannot attack during PT, but the team is free to deal with the turrets. Note that someone under the effect of Perfect Target is counted for point control. It’s possible to hit Regeneration before PT to ensure that you’re at full health when PT ends. While PT is a strong ability, it is solo merely a break in the action and thus it is most effective while in a team.

A team of Assaults pushing the point together is a force to be reckoned with, but it is also a prime target for Recons dropping bombs and other AOE attacks. Be sure to spread out.

Standing still allows one to fire the Mini- and Inferno-gun longer, but stationary targets are easy prey for snipers. It is also not necessary to stand on a point that is under control at all times. bit be ready to jump back on it at any moment!

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