The Let's Play Archive

City of Heroes

by Cleretic

Part 1: Origins and Archetypes - S.D.

Why hello there! I'm Professor Lightbulb, a level 1 Technology Defender, assigned here to give you more information on Paragon City and the people who blow up large chunks of it! I see that you are a recently registered hero/recently wanted criminal in the Rogue Isles, so let's talk about how you are classified by our record system!

One of the first things we record about you is your Origin and your Archetype. Along with (eventually) your name, but we always ask about Origin and Archetype first.

What's an Origin?

Your Origin is the source of your powers, and is broken down into five categories. Luckily for you, I have a checklist here that can help you determine the right Origin just for YOU!

If so, you might be classified as a MAGIC Origin.

"You receive your powers from a magical source. These abilities might come from a mystical artifact bestowed upon you, the mastery of numerous magical spells, or pacts made with powerful dimensional entities."

If so, you might be classified as a SCIENCE Origin.

"You received your powers either through purposeful scientific inquiry or some accident gone awry. You have since learned to harness your new-found abilities, becoming a powerful force in the world."

If so, you might be classified as a TECHNOLOGY Origin.

"You derive your powers from technological devices, from suits of high-tech body armor to powerful energy weapons. Few have been able to duplicate the amazing technology which lies behind your gadgets. You need not be a brilliant inventor; you may have acquired these items from another source."

If so, you might be classified as a MUTATION Origin.

"You were born with abilities which set you apart from the rest of humankind. Your powers manifested at birth, puberty, or possibly adulthood. Mutants are often viewed with awe and fear by those who don't understand them."

If so, you might be classified as a NATURAL Origin.

"You aren't 'super' at all; your amazing talents come from intense training and innate abilities. You might have been driven to physical excellence by some all-encompassing desire for perfection or revenge, or perhaps you are not human at all, and possess powers natural to your race."

These sound like pretty broad groupings. What if I'm a radioactive brain in a robot body, or my gun shoots magic bullets?

Then we go with the most democratic way of deciding.

Wait, what impact does Origin actually HAVE on me?

Next to none whatsoever! Oh, there will be a few times when people might comment about it in dialog, and you will start out with a minor power that's based on Origin (which you'll drop once you get some ACTUAL powers as you level during your career), but beyond that, all Orgin does is affect what store you buy enhancements for your powers at. It's purely a background/cosmetic choice.

I heard there was talk of a SIXTH Origin, something above the other five?

Uh... *bzzt* Sorry, no information on any other origins can be found!

But what's all this talk about 'Incarnates'--

*BZZT* SORRY NO INFO CAN BE FOUND! Yet. Incarnates are a bit more steeped in game lore and game mechanics than what I've just been talking about, so we'll save that for another time. Let's talk about something that DOES have an impact on you - Archetypes.

So what's an Archetype, then?

Archetypes are your 'class', and narrow down what powersets/playstyle you will be using.

Once again, I've compiled a handy checklist to help determine what Archetype is best suited for you!

You might be a SCRAPPER.

Possibly the most basic melee class, you run up to people and hit them! Over and over and over and over and over again, until they (or you) are on the floor. A Scrapper's primary Powerset are melee-oriented, while their secondary powerset is based around keeping them alive. The unique ability for Scrappers is Critical Hit, a chance to sometimes do double damage with their attacks.

You might be a TANKER.

The inverse of the Scrapper, the Tanker trades overall damage-dealing ability in exchange for increased survivability. Tanker Powersets are the reverse of the Scrapper, meaning they'll get their survivability powers at a faster rate (and with better numbers overall than their punchy counterparts). Their unique ability is Gauntlet, which causes their enemy-affecting abilities to taunt everyone around their target, who then (try to) smack the tanker around and ignore everyone else. Tankers also recently received another ability, Bruising, which causes the first attack in their melee powerset to do a damage resistance debuff on their target (making them take more damage) for a very short amount of time.

You might be a BRUTE.

Sort of a cross between a Scrapper and Tanker, the Brute's basic stats lie somewhere in-between the two - More hit points and slightly less damage than a scrapper, but with Tanker numbers for their defensive powerset. What makes them stand out is their unique Ability, Fury, which is a scaling damage bonus that increases every time they make an attack or ARE attacked, and decreases when they aren't doing either. Needless to say, some most some Brutes recklessly storm into entire mobs... and come out the other side, still swinging.

You might be a STALKER.

The glass cannon of the melee sets, Stalkers are somewhat similar to Scrappers, but with less hit points. More importantly, they have two powers unique to their Archetype before we even talk about their unique ability. The first is Hide, a stealth power that allows the Stalker to position themselves without enemies noticing them, and allows the Stalker's first attack to be a guaranteed critical hit for double damage. The second power is Assassin's Strike, a powerful attack with a long charge-up animation that not only does extra damage if launched while in Hide.

On top of that, their unique ability is Assassination, which does several things after a recent buff:

* It increases their critical hit chance the larger their team is;
* Assassin Strikes made while in Hide have a chance to cause enemies around them to cower in terror due to one of their friends getting a gaping hole in their chest/head/body part out of nowhere.
* Every attack has a chance to stack Assassin's Focus on the Stalker, which is a 33% chance for Assassin Strike to do a regular crit from outside of Hide.

TL;DR - Stalkers are scary single-target crit machines.

Look no further, you're probably a BLASTER.

The original, prototypical glass cannon. All of your powers are geared towards doing damage, whether it be from range in your primary Powerset, or in melee from your secondary Powerset. Unlike the previous four Archetypes, you start out with no defense and no ability to resist Sleep, Stun, and Hold powers. But who cares! BURN THE WORLD.

The blaster unique ability is Defiance, which causes a short-lived, stacking damage bonus for every attack they make (similar to Brutes, but not as powerful). More importantly, it allows the blaster to still use their first powers while stunned, put to sleep, or held.

You might be a DEFENDER.

Considered by many to be a support archetype, Defender powersets are geared towards making your teammates AWESOME and/or making your enemies COMPLETELY SUCK. Whether it's putting your teammates in a hamster-bubble of a force field or forcing your opponents to struggle through a patch of tar, Defenders can help turn the tide of battle or turn a wrecking ball of a team into a rolling wave of death.

Their unique ability is Vigilance, which decreases the power cost of the Defender's powers as their teammates health goes down. This was almost universally considered a terrible ability, so Vigilance also gives a damage bonus to the Defender based on how FEW teammates they have.

... it made sense at the time.

You might be a CORRUPTOR.

A 'sort of' opposite to Defenders, Corruptors are more slightly focused on doing damage than overall buffs/debuffs. Their unique ability is Scourge, which is an increasing chance of landing critical hits as their enemy's health gets lower.

You might be a CONTROLLER.

Controllers combine a Defender's ability to buff and debuff targets with the ability to lock down enemies in order for them to receive their brutal, brutal beatings. Controllers get a variety of 'mez' abilities that can immobilize targets, cause them to go to sleep or attack their friends, or just straight-up cause them to not move at all. Additionally, one of the powers a Controller eventually get is a combat pet summon, which follows them around and can dramatically increase their damage out, help out by throwing out additional mez abilities into combat, or anything in between.

The Controller unique ability is Containment, which allows them to do double damage against any target that is already mezzed. It also gives their mez ability a chance to 'overpower' their target, making the status effect have a stronger effect.

You might be a DOMINATOR.

Much like Controllers, Dominators lock down their targets with a variety of holds, sleeps, stuns, and and eventually their own combat pet(s). Unlike Controllers, their secondary powerset is full of direct damage, in of both the melee and ranged variety.

Their unique ability is Domination, a power that increases both the power and duration of their mez abilities. It also completely refills their endurance bar and helps protect against mez attacks by enemies while it's active.

You might be a MASTERMIND.

Whether it's demons from the underworld, mass-produced robots from a factory, or even just that gang down the street you gave a sack of money to, you have your own posse of goons to use as your iron fist of damage and/or meat shield. Masterminds are the 'pet' Archetype, a group of up to 6 minions you can (mostly) directly control and support (unlike Controller and Dominator pets, who just follow and charge forward as appropriate).

The Mastermind unique ability is Supremacy, which is an increase to your minions' damage and accuracy so long as they're close by to you.

What other Archetypes are there? I think I saw a tentacle alien flying around, and a bunch of guys with Doctor Octopus arms running around in combat armor...

First off, I know what you're thinking about those tentacle aliens. Stop watching Hentai anime. Secondly, both of those groups will be covered in a future installment.

But right now I need to polish my head and find some gloves that actually let me hold a pencil with this clipboard, so until next time, valiant hero/dastardly villain! And welcome to/stay the hell out of Paragon City!