I’ve been playing Marvel Heroes since closed beta, so I’ve had some time to ease into all the additions and changes Gazillion has made to the game over the years. Leveling up new characters and gearing them out is a familiar process for me, but it wasn’t until a recent discussion I had with our very own Som Pourfarzaneh about what to do at level cap that I realized figuring out what to do once done with the game’s story content can be daunting. Keeping that in mind, along with the fact that Marvel Heroes will be launching its 2016 rebrand very shortly, we felt it would be a good idea to put together a handy guide for all of you hitting level cap for the first time.
Find a Solid Build
You can come up with your own build, of course. But if you’re looking to optimize your play, the Marvel Heroes community is extremely active in finding the best builds for each hero. Head on over here for a great database of builds and other Marvel Heroes information.
Your Item Goals
Uniques: To best prepare you for the rest of your endgame adventures, you’ll want to start out by acquiring your character’s unique items at level 60. Uniques are, broadly speaking, your best in slot items in slots 1-5. These items grant you crucial skill ranks to your key powers, which have a huge impact on your performance. The easiest way to acquire your Uniques is to join a Bovineheim portal group. If you don’t have portals of your own, try asking on the LFG channel to see if anyone is running a portal group. Alternatively, you can simply farm the Taskmaster Terminal. If you’re having a rough time, farm the Midtown Patrol during the Midtown Monday event for easy Uniques. As a long-term goal, you’re looking to get your key powers as close to rank 50 or rank 50 as possible, and Uniques play an important role here.
Artifacts: You’ll also want to fill your four artifact slots with a baseline set. Universally useful artifacts include Advanced Metasensory Array (random drop), Gem of the Kursed (Kurse Terminal), Hand of Doom (Dr. Doom Terminal), and Taskmaster’s Fighting for Losers Guide. All of the above items can be traded for fairly cheaply. You’ll want to further tailor your artifact loadout based on your character and build, but these four items will do you fine on really any character when starting out.
Medallion: Just about any Cosmic (yellow) medallion is better than whatever Epic one you were running around with while leveling. Cosmic Medallions grant +2 ranks to all powers, so you’ll want to equip the first one you can find. Beyond that, your medallion choice will vary per character, but typically Dr. Doom, Madame Hydra, Red Skull, or Juggernaut medallions will work on most characters.
Uru Forged: Uru Forged items can be enchanted with a Runeword at your enchanter. These Runewords are important to your character’s performance, but they’re not an absolute priority to get you started with endgame content. Some of the most popular Runewords are God of Mischief (you will need to trade for the recipe or farm Loki), The Power Doop (for characters with multiple damage types or physical characters), and Bowazan (ranged). If you’re having spirit issues, you can consider the cheaply acquired River of the Soul Runeword to tide you over for a time.
Relics: Relics are an item slot that can be stacked to 1000. These are lower priority, since they don’t have a massive impact on your performance, but they do help. Most Relics aren’t useful, so you don’t want to start filling your stash with every single one that drops, but I would suggest collecting Relics of Atlantis, Lemuria, and ARMOR Alternate Reality Relics (for summoners). Some characters have specific Relic needs (e.g. Gibborim for Iron Man and War Machine), but the aforementioned ones should work on most characters.
Insignia: Another lower priority item slot when starting out, any Epic quality Insignia you can equip should be fine when starting out. But generally speaking, you’ll want to prioritize Insignia affixes in the following order: Critical Strike Rating, Critical Damage, X Damage (ranged, melee, etc), Brutal Strike Rating, Brutal Strike Damage. An Insignia with both Critical Strike Rating and Critical Damage in high amounts is an excellent drop.
Ring: You’ll want a Cosmic Ring (any Cosmic Ring) to start, but if you want to optimize, you’ll want to look for the same sorts of stats you’d be looking for in an insignia. Aside from that, Industry City Patrol Rings work well for most characters. There are many other Rings in the game as well, but these vary from character to character.
Costume Core: Your costume can be fitted with a costume core which can roll various affixes. You’ll want to find a level 60 costume core that works for your character (each hero uses a different type of core) and you’ll want to look for affixes in the following order: Invulnerability on Medkit, Health/Spirit Restore on Medkit, and 400 Life on Hit. Having one or the other of the first two will make a huge difference in your survivability, while having both is ideal. Life on Hit and any other stats (ex. +1 Fighting or Energy) are a bonus.
Costumes can also be upgraded with affixes independent of the ones granted by the equipped core. There are four tiers of affixes (four defensive, four offensive), but ideally you’ll want to use offense for all four tiers and you’re typically aiming for critical damage here.
Maximum critical damage rolls: Tier 1: 382, Tier 2: 765, Tier 3: 1177, Tier 4: 1648
All of the above costume upgrades can be done at your crafter (Hank Pym in Avengers Tower).
Pet: Equipping any pet (does not need to be summoned) will allow you to donate items to it from all the different item rarities, each filling up a bar respective to the items rarity color. Once a bar is filled, the pet will roll an affix. These affixes can be reset and items re-donated to try again for a desired affix roll. I tend to look for the following in each slot: Uncommon: Base Health, Rare: Spirit, Epic: Brutal Damage, Cosmic: +All Powers, and Unique: +Fighting. A pet with these rolls will be universally useful, but you may want to look for some more specific affix rolls depending on the character you’re playing.
Stat Goals: 40% Critical Strike Rating and 40% Brutal Strike Rating as a bare minimum. Enough defense and health so that you aren’t getting clobbered (18K is a decent average). As many power ranks for key powers as you can manage.
Continue on in Part Two for information on Odin Marks & Legendary Items, Crafting & Enchanting, Raids, Omega Points, and more!