“Impossible” ArchVillains

So I ran into one of those ‘impossible’ AVs last night — the ones that are supposed to be made more palatable with the next patch.
Now, up to this point, I was starting to think the Impossible AV thing was a bit of an Cityof urban legend. Since i7 went in, I’ve been on a team that took out Rudalak the Strong (4000+ hit points), and another one that took out Clamor.
Now… the main thing they’re fixing with AV’s is the regen rate, and I can sort of see why — they’ve basically amped up the regen rates right now to about 10 or 11 times what they used to be, and said they’ll dial back to about 3 times what they used to be. Fine.
But like I said… we’ve done a couple, and the dectupled regen rates didn’t make them undoable, and one of THEM was given as an EXAMPLE of un unbeatable AV.
Last night, I ran into an AV that was TOTALLY unbeatable…
Why? It was his (Infernal from the Tarikoss SF) regen rate, yeah, but it’s the same boosted rate as everyone else, and the team wasn’t totally retarded, so why did it matter this time?
Hit points.
Lemme lay this out. Regen in the game doesn’t work as a set number. There’s no healing or regen power in the game that’s written as “You will heal 52 points,” or “you will regen 3 points a second”; they are all written as a percentage of your total hit points: “this power will heal everyone nearby a number of points equal to 25% of the healer’s total hit points” or “you will heal 1% of your hit points every second.”
That’s why Dull Pain is cool: by raising your max hit points, it also raises the amount you heal from second to second.
So… why were those other AV’s beatable and the guy last night impossible?
Rudalak: ~4000 hit points, with a big regen rate.
Result: Eh. That’s a lot, sure, but, compared to the heroes fighting him… not A LOT. Hype (who wasn’t there, but I know his stats) has around 2300 hit points himself. Rudalak has less than double that, a really good regen rate, and something like seven maxed-out level 50 characters pounding the snot out of him. Yeah. He drops.
Clamor: ~???? hit points (didn’t look), with a big regen rate, but whose healing rate was, in turn, DEBUFFED by a Radiation power.
Result: We cleaned her clock. If you have a power that slows down a regen rate by half, and they have a HUGE regen rate, the debuff is, likewise, going to be HUGE. Honestly, the fight versus Clamor didn’t feel any different than an “old” arch-Villain fight, which I take to mean that we (and by “we” I mean “Peep”) had her debuffed down to nearly her old numbers.
Infernal: ~5300(!!!) hit points, with a big regen rate.
Result: Utterly unable to dent him. Why? Duh. He’s got more hit points and, thus a BETTER regen rate than an AV who’s been DESIGNED to take on a group of EIGHT level-50 characters. Sure, he’s not hitting as hard as Rudalak (no 600-point Area attacks), but when your health bar never drops more than 75 points out of THOUSANDS before you tap back up to full… well, you don’t need to work fast.
7 level 50’s beat on Rudalak for about 10 minutes to take him down. What possible chance does a group of unmaxed character ranging from 18 to 20 have against a guy who heals faster than that and has more hit points to start with?
So… three hours or so, messing around on a Strike Force last night, and good End of Mission XP for the missions, but in the end… no joy. The guy was simply impossible.
But the problem isn’t the regen rate. I’ve been on teams that have demonstrated that it’s not really the hit points that are the problem; it’s that there appear to be no standards or guidelines for how tough an AV should be for a given level — designers are just pulling hit point totals out of their ascii and plunking them in.
Regen rate or note, if the guy was a similar power level to OTHER level-20 AVs, we could have taken him.
As it was? No chance.

One comment

  1. Good observation. I’ve never been able to get any feel of consistency as to the toughness of various AVs. Part of it is the blend of powers they have and the blend of powers of the attacking players. Part is the setting (Infernal being surrounded by lots of other distractions, for example). But, still, some AVs are known as marshmallows and some are known as nigh-impossible, and there seems little rhyme or reason.

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