In Game Update 9: Assemble for Battle Heroes and Villains will have more opportunities to group up faster and get the team buff or to play Novice Raids, including all three Fortress of Solitude, the Batcave, and the Kahndaq, adjusted for players at your gear or skill level.
Role Optional Alerts and the Team Buff
Two of the exciting features we’re rolling out for Game Update 9 are Role Optional Alerts and the Team Buff. We have metrics that show us who is queuing for what, how long they’re waiting, and a number of other really useful things. As I’m sure you know when you queue for a Duo, you tend to get in and are able to start playing right away. Alerts are a different story, especially for those of you queuing for the damage role.
It has nothing to do with Duos only requiring two people. It’s that they require any two people. As is common in a lot of MMOs, there is a population disparity between the different roles. There are as many players queuing for Damage as there are all the other roles combined. Healers are the least common, followed by Tanks, and finally Controllers. So the end result is Healers don’t wait long at all, but Damage tends to wait much longer.
All Alerts are now role optional. Generally it shouldn’t take much more than a few minutes for an Alert queue to pop regardless of your role, assuming there are enough people willing to play that Alert. When the matchmaking system tries to form a group out of the pool of queued players it tries to form a balanced group first. As minutes pass, the system becomes increasingly less picky about finding a specific role for a given group slot.
The Role Optional Alert
The Role Optional Alert feature is made possible by the Team Buff. Any time three or more players are grouped together, within range, and in line of sight of one another, they gain a bonus to compensate for roles missing from their group.
- If your group is missing a Tank, every group member gains additional damage mitigation.
- If you’re missing a Healer, group members gain a small amount of Health regeneration when they begin to take damage and gain a further health regeneration boost while holding the block button when health is at critical levels.
- If your group is missing a Controller you will gain a small amount of additional power regeneration when your power begins dipping low.
The buffs are by no means a replacement for having the actual role in your group. But with some self reliance, it will provide you with enough of a boost to allow you to complete the Alert successfully. The Team Buff is not applied in PvP arenas, during Legends matches, nor will it function during Duels.
The end result of this is that wait times to get into an Alert should be dramatically decreased. Provided players are queued, you should be able to get into an instance in a matter of minutes, no matter your role.
In an effort to let more players experience more of the game, we’re launching Novice Raid modes for Game Update 9. Novice Raids are far less demanding than the Expert Raids. They are intended to allow more casual players and random pickup groups a chance to experience some of our best content they might not otherwise be able to experience.
The combat rating requirement is just a little bit lower for Novice Raids so you can hit them a little sooner than you can the Expert version. The content, play flow, and boss fights are identical but the fights themselves are much more forgiving. That’s not to say they will be a complete cake walk! You’ll still need to learn and execute properly on the mechanics of the boss fights if you want to succeed. Some may find Novice Raids are a great way to get some practice in while they are gearing up for the Expert versions.
Novice Raids do drop loot, however the loot will be of a lower item level. They also award the same badges, but you earn fewer of them. Novice Raids share the same lockout timer as Expert Raids, so you can’t earn loot and badges in both during the same week.
Some existing feats can be completed in either the Novice or Expert version of a Raid. However others such as the speed feats can only be completed in Expert mode. Finally we’ve also added new feats for completing the Expert version of a raid.
New Soder Colas plans available!
Plans for Soder Cola Prime and Soder Cola Max are now available for purchase from Research and Development vendors. These recover more Health and Power than a Soder Cola Extreme but provide no additional buff effect and require no Exobytes to make.
- Seeds of Change: Hazmat Rhoades’ Quest VO is now playing correctly.
- Fixed several issues with collections spawning in places only reachable by fliers.
- Rose By Any Other Name: Raised multiple Investigations so they do not interpenetrate the ground.
- Adjusted the spawn location of some collections in the Burnley District of Gotham.
- Fixed a section where Paradox Reapers were spawning too close to a Gold Collection in Gotham.
- Completing the bounty missions for Flash, Professor Zoom, Black Lightning, and Abrakadabra in Central City will now properly count towards the bounty feats.
- Items purchased with Marks of Momentum can no longer be sold.
- Storming the Ivory Tower: Powergirl will no longer keep players in combat after she is defeated.
- The Hunt for Grodd: Flash will no longer get cold feet and refuse to enter the final room in Grodd’s Lair.
- Shipping and Handling: Fixed issue where you could accidentally kill the first detective behind the first gate, and Catwoman would no longer respond.
- Corrected an issue that could sometimes cause a fully charged Mega-Smash to only cause the damage of a 50% charged attack.
- Corrected an issue with Home Run that prevented it from striking multiple targets.
- Corrected an issue that would allow Focused Spin to be performed faster than intended and reduced the damage on a minimally charged Focused Spin.
- Corrected an issue that would allow Focused Blast to be performed faster than intended and reduced the damage on a minimally charged Focused Blast.
- Damage caused by Electrogenesis and Electrocute is now properly split when affecting many targets.
- Damage caused by Electrogensis no longer stacks with itself.
- Increased the cooldown and decreased damage and damage bonus for Neural Neutralizer.
- Fan and Light Blast will now properly apply effects to players in healer stance.
- Decreased the cooldown of Light Barrier slightly.
- Decreased cooldown of Telekinetic Shield slightly.
- Reduced the supercharge cost of Arbiter of Destiny to 50%.
- Raid groups now have proper group functionality even when not in a raid region.
Fortress of Solitude: The Power Core
- The Avatar of Meta has strengthened and is no longer vulnerable until the Fortress’ defenses have been appropriately vanquished first.
- Lex Luthor’s path has been adjusted so he is less likely to get distracted and stop helping the cause.
Fortress of Solitude: Sunstone Matrix
- Superman and Lex Luthor will continue to attack others without taking sabbaticals at inappropriate times.
Research & Development:
- Fixed a number of issues causing crafting items not to display properly in the recipe list.
- Recipes will now grey out if the player doesn’t have the required materials.
- Fixed an issue that could sometimes display an incorrect quantity on hand when combining items.
- Corrected certain tier I, II and III double stat mods that were adding a Combat Rating value that was lower than intended. Specifically this affected all Tier I, II and III mods of these types: Dominance/Might, Dominance/Precision, Health/Power, Restoration/Might, Restoration/Precision, Vitalization/Might and Vitalization/Precision.
- Attempting to consume an R&D Recipe item for which you are not qualified will display an error dialog rather than a confirmation dialog.
- Chat logs should once again display cash amounts.
- Headlines: Entries in the Deeds->Headlines UI should no longer show a “movie” icon if there is no motion comic associated with that headline.
- Mail: Stacks should now properly display their amounts.
- The Watchtower 5v5 map is now an option when queuing for First Available in the On Duty menu for PvP.
- Some stats will now be displayed in percentages (IE: “25 Critical Healing Chance” will now display as “2.5% Critical Healing Chance”).
- Fixed a number of environmental issues throughout Metropolis and Gotham.
- Hall of Doom: Some Tour Cams have been revamped with a more cinematic look.
- JLA Watchtower: Some Tour Cams have been revamped with a more cinematic look.
- Corrected the effects for Sorcery users that have blaster gloves equipped and use Rejuvenate or Condemn.