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Paragon Studios
MMORPG | Genre:Super-Hero | Status:Cancelled  (est.rel 04/27/04)  | Pub:NCSoft
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City of Heroes Guide: Starting A Life of Villainy, Part Two

By D on June 09, 2009

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This article is continued from "Starting a Life of Villainy, Part One."

So, we’ve looked at the awesome character creator and now it’s time to get stuck into some villainy. The tutorial will cover a lot of ground but after that you’ve got the responsibility of building your character. You will be picking two things: Powers and Enhancements.

Powers:
Every second level you will get to choose a new power from either your Primary or Secondary power-sets or a Pool Power (see below). These are not all available right away you will have to wait for some required levels to unlock the higher-level ones. (Have a look at your manual there is a table in the showing when each one is available. You will notice that the Primary powers are unlocked earlier than the Secondary.)

Keep in mind that though it looks like you have plenty of powers to freely choose right now that later on every one matters. Think about it and think ahead. For example, you might pick a lot of direct-damage Primary powers for a Brute and not leave room for defensive powers to keep them alive.

In addition to your Primary and Secondary power sets there are “Pool Powers” that are available to every character. These include powers like “Fly” or “Super-Speed” or others. In order to take the higher-level selections from these you need to already have one of the lower-level ones. The lower-level ones are available at level 6 and the higher-level ones at level 14. If you take two in the set you have access to the top power in the set when you hit level 20.

One very important Pool Power set is the “Fitness” set. This set’s level 20 power is called “Stamina” – this power makes your character recover endurance more quickly and as your character gains newer abilities you might find that they use a lot of endurance. It is usually a good idea to plan ahead and take the earlier powers in the fitness set so that you can take this one at level 20. Many characters will need Stamina so you will want to keep it in mind when you start losing endurance faster than you can keep up with. It works extremely well especially if you slot two Endurance Modification enhancements on it (see below.)

Enhancements:
Every level that you don’t get a power you get more enhancements slots to assign to your existing powers. Once you have chosen where to put those slots you can buy or find enhancements to “slot” into those places. There is a whole list of types of enhancements that will do different things when slotted onto a power. Some will increase the damage of a power, another will increase its accuracy, another still will buff a power that resists damage. Looking on the enhancements page you will see which ones can be slotted onto specific powers.

For your average attack power it is usually worth ending up with two “Accuracy” and three damage enhancements. A defensive or damage reduction power can use three “Defense Buff” or “Damage Reduction” enhancements for the appropriate one. At higher-levels there is a limit to how many enhancements you can slot onto a power before they start losing their effectiveness and it is about three of one type. So, more than three means they are better off going somewhere else.

Early on enhancements will boost abilities slightly. Later, however, they will make a huge difference. This is reflected by the different strength enhancements available. Lower-level enhancements are called “Training” and can be used by anyone. The next ones up are “Dual-Origin” and these can be used by someone who is the same origin as one of the two allowed for this type. Then come “Single-Origin” which can only be used by someone with an origin that matches that enhancement. Finally, are “Invention Origin” which are crafted from recipes and may have special additional bonuses when slotted. Enhancements are most likely going to be the single most expensive things you will use your money for.

RESPECs:
This is important! You WILL eventually in your career have the option to earn or receive a respec. This will let you re-select all your powers and enhancement slots. Before doing this plan out well what you would like to change. It makes sense to hold off doing this until you have tried enough powers to know which ones you want to keep or lose.

Party Dynamics

In a team there are different roles that need to be filled in order for it to work successfully. In CoV teams can contain up to 8 players (often with at least one Mastermind bringing a group of pets.) This can get confusing and crowded. It’s important to know your job and not lose focus on what you need to do.

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