Missing PVP Fundamentals

I have played many PVP games competitively over the years, with more success in some than in others. While playing these games I have noticed a lot of “fundamentals” that competitive PVP games try to stick to. With Hero Hunters these seem to all fly out the window though, and I rarely see anyone bring it up. I get that the focus right now in PVP is the heal/revive meta issue and min/maxers being a problem. However, why isn’t there more discussion on these fundamental problems?

For instance most PVP games try to stay as far away from luck or chance based skills as possible. It sets a poor precedent. In one game I might win simply because Mandrake’s Tomahawk went off and stunned a healer allowing me to get a kill, while in the exact same match it might miss and I could lose cause that heal went off. In either case I had no control over the stun and the outcome was strictly due to luck, not skill.

This is one reason I think heroes like Clyde are so terrible right now (that and his hp is non-existant). One of his skills has a high 50% chance to do extra crit damage, while another can either totally miss or hit half the time. Both only work half the time and it’s a total coin flip. Dirty Fighter only does bonus damage vs stunned opponents further compounding the problem. I can understand SMALL chances on fairly insignificant skills, but when you talk 50% on major skills like that it has a huge impact on match outcome.

These two heroes aren’t the only ones in the game that are luck reliant. There are a number of other heroes with skills that have a huge miss chance. In addition to this, AI is completely random. Sometimes you will get a few to help you DPS down a target, other times they will be attacking that full hp Matador who isn’t even taunting while you are trying to finish off a 5% hp Ifrit.

Of course another issue is there also are no diminishing return on effects. I am not as certain this is a problem, but it could potentially be. Most games have diminishing returns to keep you from stun locking or over healing, but not in Hero Hunters.

I could do a 6 second stun with Mandrake (luck permitting), another 10 second stun with Mauler, and then follow it up with an 8 second Taser/stun from Flatline. That would put a hero out of commission for a whopping 23 seconds. At the moment this doesn’t seem to be a huge issue because of the healing meta, but I could foresee it becoming one in the future.

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I’ll cut it short. The game allows you to manipulate AI quite well as of late. Here’s some pointers:

  1. Gale, or Wesson in your team. All have mark and the AI will obey the mark 95 % of time. Use it strategically and main the hero in fights.
  2. AI favors out of cover targets. Break cover of the target you want dead, use a hero who can spread. Panzer is a go to option.
  3. your stun dilemma is countered by Heimlock/target loss/AI randomness.Highly requesting more cleansers though as Phoenix does only self cleanse. We will see if the new warf are updated brings the buffs and rebuffs and dispels into the meta.
  4. Heal blocking is strong (dunno how strong but very, devs please…) Again, Wesson, sapphyr, or Callidus.

To get back to Clyde, operator, and drake. Yeah a half chance breaks those abilities to bits. Offset with a dot or the stun or make it full is my suggestion.

This warrants very little discussion as it is not on the top list. Currently as in other threads the 10 star platzer or Snoop doggy dogface accompanied by 4 silvers is a bigger issue to address as there is no viable counter.

Anyway build a team around these sentiments and you’ll notice a lot less hassle.

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Clyde’s design is based on the old western cowboy idea. A duelist with huge potential for massive damage or could just be useless. He is the definition of a high risk-high reward character with abilities that partially require some luck, other some skill. His Silver thru Platinum all have some user-control component that either allows him to really do well or just be a sitting duck depending on how well you play him.

LN6 and Dirty finger both have base parts to their skill. When conditions are met, (or keeping in line with his design idea you get lucky,) you get the bonus damage. Similarly with Crackshot, if you take the time and accuracy to build it up you are doing a lot more damage. On top of all that, he has a 50% chance to do a massive single target damage shot that has the potential to win you the game.
Hes a very unreliable hero but when played to get the most out of him (IE not relying on his Quick shot to hit everytime) he becomes a hero that can be the reason you won or lost.

Clyde’s not the best example to highlight chance skills though because like i said, that his entire design. There’s also different types of chance skills such as Mortal Rift for Sapphyr and Submerge for Fischer. Both have very small chances to occur but can have pretty massive effects when they are triggered. They are not guaranteed though, especially on Fischer where someone like Prophet could take him down before he get the chance for it to trigger.

Some other types like Mandrakes Tomahawk would be Surges Gravitron surge or Halo’s Discharge. Both skills do a base damage, but have a chance to do bonus damage or even a game changing stun in Surge’s case. Part of the reason why these abilities have a certain % chance to occur is because they would either be to weak without that chance, or too powerful if it always occurred. If Surge had a guaranteed lift as an ability, I’m sure he would see so much more play because it is that powerful.

I just don’t see a problem with having some chance abilities especially when if they occur they can be game changing. It allows for a risk-reward play style and can sometimes win you games when you should have lost, or vice-versa but that’s the risk you are willing to take on.


That’s exactly the problem though. You should win because of skill, not because you got lucky/unlucky with an ability. I could play significantly better than my opponent, have a better team make up, etc. and still theoretically lose if none of my chance based skills go off and all of his or hers do. You don’t see that as an issue?

Let me be clear in that I know a lot of competitive PVP games have chance or luck involved on skills. However, that chance is usually a small percent difference (like 5% or less) and it’s not a huge deal (usually a few thousand damage when characters have hundreds of thousands of health). For example in other games Drake’s Tomahawk would do 46k~ base damage and stun for 6 seconds, with a 50% chance to do 3k bio dmg per second for 6 seconds. There is still a luck factor, but if you get lucky or unlucky it’s not a big difference as it’s only a change in 20k damage vs a 6 second stun AND 20k dmg.

You brought up Surge being too powerful if his lift worked all the time, but as is he is a garbage hero in part since it has only a chance to work. Clyde is too luck dependant (on top of being squishy) so he’s never used. In fact most of the heroes with luck-based skills, save Nightingale, are rarely used right now. Mandrake is used only because his gold skill is so good. If Tomahawk works it’s a bonus.

I feel like when you have competitive PVP matches with prizes at stake, leaving a decent amount of a match up to luck is a pretty poor decisions on the developer’s part. Of course there are tons of other luck factors not even involved like being faced vs elemental types stronger or weaker than your own, AI assisting or not, etc. Obviously good players will still place high if they play well and stack the odds in their favor, but for those close matches? These random things can make or break matches.


That last part, that’s exactly why each hero differs from each other. Each hero has the ability to change the course of a PvP match with any skill they have.
I’ll use Phoenix as an example. You come down to a 1v1 with her after everyone else has died and shes almost dead compared to your half health mech. You end up killing her and she goes to her phoenix form and revives and ends up winning the game for the other player. Now isn’t that luck rather than skill? There’s no skill involved in that exchange but the ability itself has no explicit “chance” factor to it. This situation doesn’t come up often, but should we remove it entirely because of the 1% chance this can occur it gives an unfair advantage to one person?

That’s exactly the problem though. You should win because of skill, not because you got lucky/unlucky with an ability. I could play significantly better than my opponent, have a better team make up, etc. and still theoretically lose if none of my chance based skills go off and all of his or hers do. You don’t see that as an issue?

On this part too ill go back to my Clyde example. You are taking the risk that this hero could possible do more damage or win you the match OR he could be the detriment that you lose. The skill involved with a hero like Clyde is making use of his skills that don’t have a chance (Ex. His Crackshot stacks, hitting your last shot for LN6, using Dirty Finger on a stunned target) while finding out the best time to use Quickdraw, preferably when it wont be costly if it does miss.

I guess all I’m saying is if you put together a team that relies on chance based skills, then you are taking the risk that those entail. You may lose a game or two to teams that statistically you should beast, but on the flip side you will win games against teams that you really shouldn’t beat because of a skill or skills that you were able to get the full potential of. If you don’t want to take on that risk then you can always take a more safer approach, which historically most people do because of the risk of losing a game because of a hero.

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No, because that’s a TOTALLY different example than what I am talking about. Phoenix will go into Phoenix form almost every match. The other player won because of a statics ability that always activates. That’s no different than winning because you popped Dog’s bronze and silver and killed an enemy with them, or you used Nightingale’s heal.

Now that situation would be the same as what I am talking about IF Phoenix Flame only had a 50% chance to work. Maybe it happened to work that match and you won. Maybe others it won’t work and you will lose. Regardless it working on not had nothing to do with your skill level or being able to prepare for it.

Exactly. Most of the heroes that rely heavily on luck aren’t used. Surge? Nope. Clyde? Nope (also because his health sucks). Heroes like Mandrake and Nightingale are only used because their other skills are so useful the chance on one of their skills isn’t that important.

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I don’t think having chance based skills are really that big a problem in the grand scheme of things, the amount of heroes who have chance based skills aren’t that many, and they’re all manageable risks when you take them. Those types of skills should be “icing on the cake” type skills… if you’re building a team where you’re relying on a “50% of the time, works every time” type skill, then your team comp is already flawed from the get go.

I’ve played a lot of competitive PvP games as well, and I’ve even followed some Dev blogs (like Riot’s design blogs for League of Legends), and I’ve learned that when looking for a balanced mechanic or character, some Devs go with a sort of “power budget” type mentality… and reliability is part of that budget… if you have an ability that hits every time… then you’ve eaten up some of that ability’s budget. Skillshots that move slowly or can miss, have more left over “power” to be put into their effects (which is probably why Beck’s grenade, Yanlong’s Mortar and Clyde’s Quickdraw hit like rocket powered trucks, since they’re so easy to dodge or they miss 1/2 the time). This is also probably someone like Heckler or Mauler don’t have as much raw Damage from their guns as Odachi, Panzer or Dogface… because some of their power goes to their easily applied Disruption (mini-stuns for Heckler and disorient for Mauler)

Most of the characters you’ve mentioned aren’t used because of other inherent weaknesses in their kits or their stats which would make them less viable:

  • Clyde: His health is really low, he’s maybe the penultimate example of Glass Cannon in this game (maybe only sharing that distinction with Kunoichi and Artemis). So he’s a huge risk even to begin with, as a biochem hero with decent damage can kill him quickly, unless you build a team comp around specifically protecting him.
  • Surge: outside of his root and his occasional Lift, he doesn’t really do anything… his gun is pretty terrible, and his overall damage is super low, his (plat) healing is sporadic and minimal and he has no other utility than his CCs, and currently the most popular/commonly seen damage dealers are strong against his element.

I do however agree with you on the diminishing returns issue, I’d love to see the Devs look into working on making a systemic change that can help prevent people from stun-locking your hero, with the right comp (tho currently the meta doesn’t really support that type of team comp so the problem isn’t so pronounced)

I think one of the big problems with why the Revive/heal meta is around and so strong, and why PvP is static, is as what one of the devs (I think Howitzer?) mentioned, going into a PvP match blind is not good for diverse team comps, as you never know what you’re gonna face on the other end. So people just take the absolute safest and most consistent comp there is (aka: healer and reviver heavy) just to be on the safe side. As if you take a crit focused comp into a match, and you run into Razorback or Pheonix (aka: anti-crit heroes) then that sucks for you, if you take an anti-healer team (one that revolves around Callidus, Wesson and/or Sapphyr) and they actually took a Shielder team or one with no healing… then a good portion of your team’s power (and it’s “win condition”) is negated before the match starts. Same with a mandrake stealth team… if the enemy has Markers or anti-stealthers (Ifrit or Chesterfield) or heroes with “hit everyone” abilities (Oro, Fortress, Panzer, Razorback, Callidus) then your stealth is mainly negated and your risky comp is at a dissadvantage already.

This in and of itself makes the meta and PvP fairly stale and sometimes frustrating.