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Cryptic Studios | Official Site
MMORPG | Setting:Super-Hero | Status:Final  (rel 09/01/09)  | Pub:Atari
PVP:Yes | Distribution:Retail | Retail Price:n/a | Pay Type:Hybrid | Monthly Fee:n/a
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Balancing Melee vs. Ranged

Posted by Michael Bitton on Jul 23, 2009  | Comments

Balancing Melee vs. Ranged - Champions Online -

Champions Online Daily News spoke to Cryptic Studio's senior producer Chris Lena, and PvP designer James Laird regarding the delicate balancing act involved in keeping melee vs. ranged fighters level.

As many MMOG fans know, the issue of melee vs. ranged is an issue in just about any game, but for fans of City of Heroes, this issue was much more pronounced due to the movement options available in that game. Given that Champions Online allows even more freedom, it's no wonder that fans have been curious as to what Cryptic Studios has planned to make melee viable in an environment that highly favors ranged damage dealers.

With not much information to go on, a recent preview by Kotaku's AJ Glasser seemed to confirm many fans' fears:

Ranged Combat Is Cheap: This is actually a plus for a jerk like me – but I think it's cause for complaint. Emmert says that the tradeoff between a ranged superhero who can just spam a single fireball attack while flying around in a circle is that a melee superhero's attacks are more powerful. He says that this makes it more rewarding for the melee character if he or she can just get to that fireball-spamming jerk and execute an attack. But if the jerk is me, I'm telling you right now, you'll never catch me. You'll die cursing me for the cheap jerk I am.

This comment has caused some hub-bub amongst fans, so Cryptic Studios has taken some time to address the issue in light of recent events. When speaking to Champions Online Daily News, PvP Designer James Laird reassures us that they have taken a number of steps to keep things fair.

For one, melee powers on the whole do 20% more damage than ranged powers, which is helpful, but when you can't catch your target it can be made moot. To that end, Laird explains that players can pick up and throw objects at other players to knock them down, lunge at them and disable their travel powers, or choose powers that create synergy with their melee abilities, such as abilities that snare or hold.

On the issue of endurance building, Laird explained that they are working on a feature that allows melee users to mark their targets and then consume their mark for a large surge of endurance enabling them to utilize their heavy hitting attacks.

Get the full story at Champions Online Daily News.

What type of character do you prefer to play? Ranged? Melee? A mix of both if  possible? Let us know in the comments!

Michael Bitton / Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined as the site's Community Manager. Follow him on Twitter @eMikeB