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 Party Roles Discussion 
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Denizen
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Joined: October 29th, 2012, 8:56 pm
Posts: 346
Creating a new topic (I know there are older ones). Intent is to maybe get a rough consensus re: what roles folks generally respect and consider when building parties for Classic/Arcade and push that into the SDE Wikia.

This is my opinion based off how I've been reviewing the heroes on the SDE Wikia.

Heroes (in my mind) fall into two main roles: dealing wounds and everything else.

AOE - pretty easy - does the hero have an AOE attack. The purpose of AOE attack is primarily to defeat multiple, weaker monsters more efficiently than basic attacks. In Classic this can discourage the Consul from clumping/focusing heroes with certain positions when the hero is available to activate. In Arcade, this allows the hero to directly wound elites and avoid Expendable. I try to make note when the hero has low base offense and thus is difficult to reliably use AOE without additional buffs/equipment.

Most AOE is 2AP and has an additional effect, but does not increase offense. I make note if the AOE is above average (most aren't below this baseline), usually be being low AP cost or also increasing offense.

Parties that do not include sufficient AOE can find themselves overwhelmed with monsters and may struggle with defeating enough monsters to generate sufficient Loot to keep up with the rate of spawns. This can be alleviated by prioritizing high mobility heroes that focus on defeating spawn points for loot or looting treasure chests. The trade off is that spawn points trigger Plots and Mini-bosses in Arcade and Treasure Chests can spawn Boo Booties and bad stuff. Many Treasures give heroes access to AOE, but since this is RNG based, it typically isn't wise to rely on Treasures to provide AOE attacks, which tend to be more valuable earlier in the game.

Special Note: Red Potions often provide additional AOE attacks that may be used by anyone in the party with suitable matching offensive stat. Blue Potions often provide additional offense that may be combined with an AOE attack.

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Blaster - I think this is the one that folks may disagree with most or have the strongest opinions/discussion for. Blasters, again in my opinion, can deal high(er) offense attacks to increase the likelihood of wounding a high defense monsters, which will typically be mini-bosses and dungeon bosses. With the addition of Critical Success, this can work as a pseudo AOE in Arcade by attacking elites and killing off multiple expendable minions regardless of their positioning. However, with the addition of Critical Success, with sufficient offense, it may be more efficient for a hero to use basic attacks over Blaster attacks. I try to again make note when the hero has low base offense or the unique action has a high AP cost so it may be less efficient to use those unique actions compared to basic attacks.

Most Blaster attacks are 2AP, increase offense, and sometimes have an additional effect. In many cases, it may be more efficient to just use basic attacks rather than a Blaster attack for heroes that have high offense. Blaster attacks tend to be more valuable the less equipment the heroes have access to and they are a consistent source of increased offense that can guard against Arcade Challenges and Plots that destroy equipment and poor equipment RNG.

Parties do not need to include Blasters if they have favorable Loot/Treasure RNG since basic attacks can be sufficient to wound high defense monsters. Blaster attacks are more valuable the weaker the heroes are.

Special Note: Blue Potions often provide additional offense that may be combined with any attack and can fulfill the role of a Blaster attack as long as the party can maintain a supply of potions and stacks with a Blaster attack.

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Everything else:

Healer - Basically any hero with consistent access to Heal. This is most often a green Heal Potion or support action that Heals. Immunity and Remedy doesn't count b/c they can't heal wounds. Regenerate does not count b/c it cannot remove status effects and tends to be horribly inefficient and RNG based. Healer is recommended, but not required since high offense parties can potentially generate sufficient Hearts to heal the party.

Tank - Basically any hero with above average defense can generally be equipped to Tank. Most may have additional immunities, Hearts, or abilities/actions that can help tank. My biggest gripe about Tanking is that in Classic the Consul can just ignore the Tank in many cases unless it's forcing an objective and in Arcade the Tank needs to have sufficient offense to keep Wrath, which generally means they need some offense or the party needs to consistently generate enough potions to slurp for wrath, which takes up an emergency potion slot for healing. Tanks get weaker the more heroes there are b/c they activate less often to generate wrath and slurp potions does not scale. Also, AOE attacks generate so much wrath, it can be difficult for a Tank to keep up unless they specifically are the ones doing the AOE (in which case are they really tanking or just being awesome at AOE and not dying on the side).

I distinguish Tanking from just ensuring the heroes have sufficient Defense to survive and also being able to maintain Wrath or force the Consul to make those attacks/prevent the Consul from attacking other heroes.

Controller - Basically any hero with a Control (Push/Compel/Pull) effect for both allies and monsters. This is useful for Heroes to give them (usually) additional movement. In Classic to run monsters into negative tile effects and disrupt Consul positioning/attempts to block LOS. In Arcade to disrupt Gang cohesion. Control tends to be more valuable in Classic due to more situations where it has value and b/c Arcade monsters defend with ARM, which is usually higher than the corresponding Classic stat when rolling to hit with support control effects. In general, it can be used to set up a following AOE attack. Control is not required and in many situations may not be better than just using AOE/basic attacks.

Support - This is basically anything 'else' that doesn't fall into the above. Aura Buffs, mobility, offense buffs, defense buffs etc. etc. Basically anything the hero can do to help its party. Many are straightforward and many are situational, but none will generally make/break a party. Things like Stealth, Teleport, etc. I'd leave in this bucket (Teleport I'm on the fence if that would be Control for additional mobility, but /shrug).

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Potions - Parties that are reliant on using Potions to fulfill their AOE, Blaster, and Heal roles are reliant on an additional layer of RNG to generate potions on successful attacks. Potions are not guaranteed to be self sustaining and keeping a party supplied with potions generally relies on having sufficiently high offense and access to Red/Green dice to generate potions. In addition, the party may choose to use basic attacks to have more chances to generate potions rather than AOE attacks on multiple, weak monsters. As such, Potions can be very powerful and fun to use, but are privy to feast and famine scenarios during games. In Arcade, there can be Challenges that completely wipe out potions or prevent the heroes from using potions.

Party Guidelines - My personal recommendation for choosing a balanced party is:

1) 2 heroes /w AOE
2) (recommended) 1 hero /w Blaster (can be same as AOE hero)
3) (recommended) 1 hero that can fulfill Healer role
4) Up to 2 heroes that use STR for offense
5) Up to 1 hero that uses DEX/WILL for offense to avoid loot contention
6) At least 1 hero that uses each primary stat for offense or defense to avoid loot waste
7) At least 1 hero with a ranged attack
8) Avoid heroes that deal status effects the selected monsters have immunity to as their actions will have less value
9) Consider prioritizing heroes that are immune to the status effects inflicted by the selected monsters

If you are not interested in a balanced party, then you can do whatever you want, which is one of the great things about SDE :). Some of my more memorable matches is specifically fielding unbalanced parties -- these tend to be most reliant on Loot/Treasure RNG as to how well they perform.


April 9th, 2018, 4:20 pm
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