*** The Hood (Classic) ***

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  • Hood and Loki are classic support characters that make you re-think your method of attack.

    On the one hand, you really want to kill that Xforce or whatever the damage threat is as soon as possible.

    But if you let either Hood or Loki stick around, they'll make you pay.

    Luckily, they are both extremely easy to down. One Xforce will kill Hood and an Xforce plus a little cascading will take down Loki.

    I don't view either as overpowered because, other than that, neither offers all that much to their team.

    Loki can shake the board and counter strike tiles, but he doesn't have any offensive power of his own, meaning if he was the last person on the team, he'd do essentially nothing.

    Hood, also has a countdown reduction ability that does almost no damage. His yellow is much much stronger, which doesn't really match his purpose if you ask me, but it also costs a lot of AP, which helps make up for how powerful it is.

    Either way, they are defensive deterrents without being juggernauts offensively.

    Not because they guarantee victory or even make victory all that much more likely. But they drag fights out by stealing AP. And in a meta that requires quick fights and strong defense, playing a drawn out fight can mean a heavy loss for anyone attacking you if they get a bad board.

    They serve their purpose very effectively.
  • IlDuderinoIlDuderino Age Unconfirmed Posts: 427 Mover and Shaker
    I think it is very powerful but frequently I find that the board layout is such that it doesn't contribute much and the enemy is still able to get off a few heavy hitting powers.

    He is good on defence because of it (and it is a good deterrent). He is not that hard to down when I am on the offensive, the problem is that often, because of the threat of DA, he has distracted you from hitting Xforce, Thor etc and it allows them to get off their powers and gives a defensive win. With my roster, on offence it is hard to make him not match at least yellow, blue and pink (purple) so he is not sustainable for long pushes.

    His health is bad, his black is bad and his yellow is a great finisher but very expensive and ends the turn, leaving him wide open to attack.

    I think overall he works as a character because he combines the great with the very bad. I don't have a problem with his balance. Without DA he would be a bit like 3* Iron Man (one good but expensive and limited power) but without the AP generation / stealing and with crummy health. Other characters are in greater need of rebalancing (Invisible Woman, Beast, Doc Oc, She-Hulk, Iron Man, Spidey etc)
  • Its probably the best passive in the game, i think hes fine where he is.
    His low health and the fact that his yellow takes a while to build, and ends the turn, balances him out.
  • PhaserhawkPhaserhawk Age Unconfirmed Posts: 2,676 Chairperson of the Boards
    To me there is a very, very, very simple fix that just chips away at his blue power and that could easily be monitored and tweaked. What is it, first it has been stated before but I think it's the right thing and that is a threshold. I would start it off exactly as Falcon's, requiring 5 blue AP for Dormmanu's to kick in, that's it. If it's too much you can tweak it down to 4 or 3, if' it needs a little more you can try 6.

    What does this do? Well it adds strategy, just like when you run Daken/Falcon, is it worth using the Chemical Reaction if it means losing the special tile destruction? For Hood it would be the same way, is it worth Power Surging now if it means losing AP steal for a few turns?

    If this brings in his power too much, like I said you can change the threshold or perhaps beef up other skills, like have intimidation do more damage
  • IlDuderinoIlDuderino Age Unconfirmed Posts: 427 Mover and Shaker
    Phaserhawk wrote:
    To me there is a very, very, very simple fix that just chips away at his blue power and that could easily be monitored and tweaked. What is it, first it has been stated before but I think it's the right thing and that is a threshold. I would start it off exactly as Falcon's, requiring 5 blue AP for Dormmanu's to kick in, that's it. If it's too much you can tweak it down to 4 or 3, if' it needs a little more you can try 6.

    What does this do? Well it adds strategy, just like when you run Daken/Falcon, is it worth using the Chemical Reaction if it means losing the special tile destruction? For Hood it would be the same way, is it worth Power Surging now if it means losing AP steal for a few turns?

    If this brings in his power too much, like I said you can change the threshold or perhaps beef up other skills, like have intimidation do more damage

    My concern with this is that some people would just boost to get around any threshold which is less than 7 (so Hood would become a pay to win character) and that it gives attackers an even greater advantage in that the attacking Hood would immediately be stealing and the defending Hood would need to acquire ap to counteract the effect
  • The Hood is a classic trap of people thinking support means depth or complexity or something. There's nothing deep about a character who basically just stands there and doubles the effectiveness of everyone else, which is what The Hood is. For that matter there's nothing balanced about such a character to begin with. There's something around 33% chance that the board will have 10 or more tiles of a given color, so with 6 colors you're expected to steal 2 AP a turn (less if they don't have certain colors but generally not an issue after a few turns). If a normal turn where both teams make 1 match this means you get 5 AP while the opponent gets 1 AP. Even if there's a 2-chain that's still 8 versus 4. The Hood conservatively doubles the effectiveness of your team for just standing there, and of course that's what he does because you sure aren't counting on him for Twin Pistols or Intimidation so if he didn't improve everyone else so much why would you bring him? As a result of him being way overpowered he's also at least on the receiving end of at least most indirect offense imbalances to get rid of him. Whether it's double Feral Claws, Magnetic Field, or X Force he's always on the receiving end of the latest ultra quick kill trick so that you can get rid of a guy that doubles the effectiveness of the team, and doubling the power of your team isn't much if that guy is gone by turn 5.
  • Phantron wrote:
    The Hood is a classic trap of people thinking support means depth or complexity or something. There's nothing deep about a character who basically just stands there and doubles the effectiveness of everyone else, which is what The Hood is. For that matter there's nothing balanced about such a character to begin with. There's something around 33% chance that the board will have 10 or more tiles of a given color, so with 6 colors you're expected to steal 2 AP a turn (less if they don't have certain colors but generally not an issue after a few turns). If a normal turn where both teams make 1 match this means you get 5 AP while the opponent gets 1 AP. Even if there's a 2-chain that's still 8 versus 4. The Hood conservatively doubles the effectiveness of your team for just standing there, and of course that's what he does because you sure aren't counting on him for Twin Pistols or Intimidation so if he didn't improve everyone else so much why would you bring him? As a result of him being way overpowered he's also at least on the receiving end of at least most indirect offense imbalances to get rid of him. Whether it's double Feral Claws, Magnetic Field, or X Force he's always on the receiving end of the latest ultra quick kill trick so that you can get rid of a guy that doubles the effectiveness of the team, and doubling the power of your team isn't much if that guy is gone by turn 5.
    You described less of what makes him overpowered and more of why people use him.

    Anything can sound overpowered if you only list its pros and shortly brush over the cons.

    But cons can help balance a character pretty well. And in the case of Hood, he can be killed within 2 turns pretty easily.

    Xforce, boost 2 green/black, green match, green match. Dead.

    Compare that to the other top tier characters, Xforce, 4hor, LThor, Fury and formerly Sentry, all of whom had at least 10k health, and you can see that fighting a team that has such an easily killable character on it is an extremely attractive option on offense.

    Now, obviously, if the board has 10 green on it, but no 3 matches, which isn't all that likely, you could be in trouble.

    Unless you bring your own Hood.

    And that is really the biggest strength of Hood. If you want to guarantee a win against a Hood team, just bring your own Hood. You just won.

    You can protect your Hood. They can't protect their Hood on defense.

    So that's the main strength of Hood. He requires the other team to bring Hood, so that knocks out a certain percentage of the player base from ever wanting to attack you.

    But other than that, he is not overpowered at all.

    It is definitely difficult to beat a Hood if your Hood died or you don't have one.

    But that's literally all he has going for him.

    And even then, if you boost such that you only need one match, such as 3 green/black and 3 all boosts, all you is 1 green match and he's dead. You could go 3 g/b and 2 all ap, but then if there is 13 green on the board and you match 3, you'd have 7 at the start of your turn.

    So while it is a strong strategy to use Hood as a defensive deterrent it isn't strong enough to stop people from running Xforce Thor teams and it certainly isn't strong enough to re-define the meta.

    Maybe you think all 3 are overpowered. I have no idea. But if Hood is overpowered, so are Daken, Thor, Wolverine and possibly a few others that can generate a strategic advantage on defense.
  • ScoregasmsScoregasms Age Unconfirmed Posts: 373
    I agree on the general consensus that Hood is OK given his low health, DA is just a really good ability and at 166, he's easy enough to deal with when playing against in PVP.

    He just becomes uber annoying when he's scaled to 395 in PVE's with 10K+ health, have to get creative and throw in a bit of luck to take him down then. Thank the gods he's one-shottable otherwise.
  • morph3usmorph3us Age Unconfirmed Posts: 859 Critical Contributor
    onimus wrote:

    Unless you bring your own Hood.

    And that is really the biggest strength of Hood. If you want to guarantee a win against a Hood team, just bring your own Hood. You just won.

    You can protect your Hood. They can't protect their Hood on defense.

    So that's the main strength of Hood. He requires the other team to bring Hood, so that knocks out a certain percentage of the player base from ever wanting to attack you.

    But other than that, he is not overpowered at all.

    It is definitely difficult to beat a Hood if your Hood died or you don't have one.

    But that's literally all he has going for him.

    So while it is a strong strategy to use Hood as a defensive deterrent it isn't strong enough to stop people from running Xforce Thor teams and it certainly isn't strong enough to re-define the meta.

    Do you think it demonstrates a lack of depth in the game, that your options are essentially bring your own Hood or X-Force, to counter an opposing Hood?

    One of the reasons why I raised the question was that after reading the thread about the relative position of X-Force and 4*Thor compared to the other 4*s, it set me to thinking about Hood's role relative to other AP manipulators, such as Mystique, and even Starlord.
  • dr tinykittylovedr tinykittylove Posts: 1,459 Chairperson of the Boards
    morph3us wrote:
    onimus wrote:

    Unless you bring your own Hood.

    And that is really the biggest strength of Hood. If you want to guarantee a win against a Hood team, just bring your own Hood. You just won.

    You can protect your Hood. They can't protect their Hood on defense.

    So that's the main strength of Hood. He requires the other team to bring Hood, so that knocks out a certain percentage of the player base from ever wanting to attack you.

    But other than that, he is not overpowered at all.

    It is definitely difficult to beat a Hood if your Hood died or you don't have one.

    But that's literally all he has going for him.

    So while it is a strong strategy to use Hood as a defensive deterrent it isn't strong enough to stop people from running Xforce Thor teams and it certainly isn't strong enough to re-define the meta.

    Do you think it demonstrates a lack of depth in the game, that your options are essentially bring your own Hood or X-Force, to counter an opposing Hood?

    One of the reasons why I raised the question was that after reading the thread about the relative position of X-Force and 4*Thor compared to the other 4*s, it set me to thinking about Hood's role relative to other AP manipulators, such as Mystique, and even Starlord.

    Or bring deadpool, daken, blade, torch. All low-ap heavy hitters.
  • morph3us wrote:
    onimus wrote:

    Unless you bring your own Hood.

    And that is really the biggest strength of Hood. If you want to guarantee a win against a Hood team, just bring your own Hood. You just won.

    You can protect your Hood. They can't protect their Hood on defense.

    So that's the main strength of Hood. He requires the other team to bring Hood, so that knocks out a certain percentage of the player base from ever wanting to attack you.

    But other than that, he is not overpowered at all.

    It is definitely difficult to beat a Hood if your Hood died or you don't have one.

    But that's literally all he has going for him.

    So while it is a strong strategy to use Hood as a defensive deterrent it isn't strong enough to stop people from running Xforce Thor teams and it certainly isn't strong enough to re-define the meta.

    Do you think it demonstrates a lack of depth in the game, that your options are essentially bring your own Hood or X-Force, to counter an opposing Hood?
    Those aren't your only options, they're just the best ones. Characters like Daken or Blade that can do significant damage without needing AP also work well, as do characters with cheap, hard hitting powers like Psylocke or Torch.

    What I think causes the perception of him being overpowered is that unlike some 3* characters, Hood is very difficult for 2* teams to handle, since they lack the damage output to kill him quickly. This means that a lot of newer players (or those with less developed rosters) aren't able to beat Hood teams reliably, or at least not without taking very large amounts of damage. So even though he has plenty of counters among his 3* peers, people who are trying to punch above their weight class in PvP tournaments will find him more difficult to handle.

    And personally, I don't think that's a problem. Characters shouldn't be tuned around the assumption that the enemy will be using a weaker team.
  • morph3us wrote:
    onimus wrote:

    Unless you bring your own Hood.

    And that is really the biggest strength of Hood. If you want to guarantee a win against a Hood team, just bring your own Hood. You just won.

    You can protect your Hood. They can't protect their Hood on defense.

    So that's the main strength of Hood. He requires the other team to bring Hood, so that knocks out a certain percentage of the player base from ever wanting to attack you.

    But other than that, he is not overpowered at all.

    It is definitely difficult to beat a Hood if your Hood died or you don't have one.

    But that's literally all he has going for him.

    So while it is a strong strategy to use Hood as a defensive deterrent it isn't strong enough to stop people from running Xforce Thor teams and it certainly isn't strong enough to re-define the meta.

    Do you think it demonstrates a lack of depth in the game, that your options are essentially bring your own Hood or X-Force, to counter an opposing Hood?

    One of the reasons why I raised the question was that after reading the thread about the relative position of X-Force and 4*Thor compared to the other 4*s, it set me to thinking about Hood's role relative to other AP manipulators, such as Mystique, and even Starlord.

    There has to be a best.

    If not Hood, Loki would become the next "it" support

    If both are nerfed, you'll see a ton of Dakens.

    There will always be an optimal team.

    But Hood, as he stands today, is not allowing people insane scores, insane speed or insane victory rates (beyond what one would consider reasonable) on defense.

    Ragnarok, Magneto and Sentry had to be nerfed because they were creating scenarios where you could win in 3 to 4 turns, making the top end of PVP way too fast and extremely chaotic.

    And Spiderman made you invincible and sustained on offense and defense.

    Hood isn't doing anything like that. He just helps his teammates go a little faster and makes the enemy team go a little slower.

    I don't see him to be a problem. He's just a strategic advantage to have him on your team. Just like Xforce and 4hor, as well as the other top tier 3 stars are an advantage as well.
  • Phantron wrote:
    The bigger problem with DA is what happens to the entire The Hood and even Loki HP class? X Force can one shot The Hood and pretty close to anyone in Loki's HP class as well. It's hard to imagine this to be the result of a freak accident, and although it's not a good balance, it is indeed fair to say a super cheap ability is probably fair if the user of that ability can be relatively easily one-shot. But what happens to everyone else who shares the same HP class as those guys? Why should Storm, HT, GSBW, Falcon, and Mystique all have to fight with the threat of being one shot by X Force while clearing not wielding power compare to DA? And what happens if you do nerf X Force so that The Hood no longer gets one-shot? While X Force is quite overpowered, it's still preferable for X Force vs X Force versus The Hood mirror matches (DA has basically no effect here and it's a snoozefest), and The Hood versus someone without The Hood or X Force is a very nasty mismatch too. I much prefer to fight Thor than The Hood but that's just trading one problem (The Hood being overpowered) for another (Thor being overpowered).

    That's why it's so pleasing to take down 270 xforce with 100 hood/loki. Homeboy can never get an attack off.
  • dider152dider152 Age Unconfirmed Posts: 263
    How is this game more than a year in and the devs still don't understand that it's not fun to play against a character whose powers hit hard and has two goons feeding him AP that he needs? Getting hit with a potential one shot like Twin Guns from the Hood within two turns is not fun. Why can't they balance that?
  • dkffivdkffiv Posts: 1,018 Chairperson of the Boards
    dider152 wrote:
    How is this game more than a year in and the devs still don't understand that it's not fun to play against a character whose powers hit hard and has two goons feeding him AP that he needs? Getting hit with a potential one shot like Twin Guns from the Hood within two turns is not fun. Why can't they balance that?

    That is balanced. They did it on purpose. This is a relatively new PvE and they specifically set up those nodes as well as the Mystique nodes next sub to have heroes with ridiculous amounts of AP that just kitty you all day and all night.
  • I have a theory that it's meant to be challenging
  • morph3usmorph3us Age Unconfirmed Posts: 859 Critical Contributor
    edited February 2015
    Muspel wrote:
    Those aren't your only options, they're just the best ones. Characters like Daken or Blade that can do significant damage without needing AP also work well, as do characters with cheap, hard hitting powers like Psylocke or Torch.

    What I think causes the perception of him being overpowered is that unlike some 3* characters, Hood is very difficult for 2* teams to handle, since they lack the damage output to kill him quickly. This means that a lot of newer players (or those with less developed rosters) aren't able to beat Hood teams reliably, or at least not without taking very large amounts of damage. So even though he has plenty of counters among his 3* peers, people who are trying to punch above their weight class in PvP tournaments will find him more difficult to handle.

    And personally, I don't think that's a problem. Characters shouldn't be tuned around the assumption that the enemy will be using a weaker team.

    Some really good points here from everyone, in terms of other viable counters. I'm very much enjoying this discussion, it's given me lots of think about. Certainly, it lends support to the devs' push for roster diversity.
  • morph3usmorph3us Age Unconfirmed Posts: 859 Critical Contributor
    onimus wrote:

    There has to be a best.

    If not Hood, Loki would become the next "it" support

    If both are nerfed, you'll see a ton of Dakens.

    There will always be an optimal team.

    But Hood, as he stands today, is not allowing people insane scores, insane speed or insane victory rates (beyond what one would consider reasonable) on defense.

    Ragnarok, Magneto and Sentry had to be nerfed because they were creating scenarios where you could win in 3 to 4 turns, making the top end of PVP way too fast and extremely chaotic.

    And Spiderman made you invincible and sustained on offense and defense.

    Hood isn't doing anything like that. He just helps his teammates go a little faster and makes the enemy team go a little slower.

    I don't see him to be a problem. He's just a strategic advantage to have him on your team. Just like Xforce and 4hor, as well as the other top tier 3 stars are an advantage as well.

    Again, some very good points, thank you.

    Let me broaden the question slightly, then. If we accept that Hood is the best in the "AP steal class", but his weaknesses are sufficient to keep him balanced in the context of the current meta, hypothetically does something need to be done about the other AP stealers, in order to make them more viable?

    Blade, I think, is well balanced, given the strength of his other abilities. Mystique seems to see more play for Infiltration/Masterstroke, than Shapeshift, though. Psylocke's Bewilder seems vastly hit or miss. And there's been a fair amount of contention about the utility of Starlord's AP manipulation abilities. Is it just that Mystique/Psylocke/Starlord are much better at other things, and therefore the comparative weakness of their AP manipulation is warranted?
  • dider152dider152 Age Unconfirmed Posts: 263
    A way to balance it would be to decrease the AP gain by goons by half and see how that works out, at least until Hood is down, then the gain goes back to normal.
  • These are gate nodes. They are intended to be VICIOUS to anyone who doesn't bring +AP All and +AP 2 colors to then murder Hood on turn 3. Without them, the node becomes next to impossible or purely luck based (maybe the muscle will actually threaten instead of Hood Twin Pistols). To finish in the top you have to bribe the game with boosts at the moment. It's a P2W feature.
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